WESTERN MOUNTAIN TOWNS UNITE TO LAUNCH PLEDGE FOR THE WILD

by Placerville Newswire / Jul 22, 2019 / comments

[Jennifer Boyd]

Program has tourism partners defining a shared set of common values, language, and tools to support and fund responsible tourism in outdoor places

July 22, 2019 (SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif./Nev.) – With travelers around the globe buzzing about sustainable tourism and responsible recreation, five U.S. mountain towns are taking the conversation to the next level and making it easier for tourists to open their hearts and wallets in support of wild places.  

Tourism agencies in South Lake Tahoe, California and Nevada; Bend, Oregon; Bozeman, Montana; Steamboat Springs, Colorado; and Flagstaff, Arizona have joined forces to empower travelers to help protect the outdoor places where they recreate. Each city has taken stock of which land managers and nonprofits are working to protect wild spaces in their communities.

Carol Chaplin, CEO of the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority, pointed out that destination marketing organizations are in a unique position to help visitors enrich their vacation experiences with stewardship. “Pledge for the Wild will provide opportunities to give back, whether they’re checking into a hotel, renting gear at a bike shop, or sitting down at a brewery,” she said. “The idea is to catch them when they’re out enjoying local amenities and to get them thinking about ways to support the great outdoors they’ve experienced on their vacation.”

South Lake Tahoe selected the Tahoe Fund’s new Environmental Venture Trust to support. Like a traditional venture capital fund, it will provide seed funding for a variety of innovative early-stage environmental projects to help solve environmental challenges facing Lake Tahoe. Their first investment is a UV Light Pilot Project that is analyzing the use of UV light to treat aquatic invasive weeds in Lake Tahoe. For more information on the project click here.

Agencies recommend outdoor enthusiasts consider donating $1/hour of recreation. For instance, a three-hour hike, mountain bike ride or skiing adventure would result in a $3 investment. Donations can be made directly through a cellular device by texting WILD4TAHOE to 44-321 as well as online https://www.tahoefund.org.

“The Tahoe Fund is thrilled to partner with Pledge Wild to make it easy for people who are enjoying Tahoe to help take care of it,” said Amy Berry, CEO of the Tahoe Fund. “Texting WILD4TAHOE will help us introduce innovative solutions to the challenges facing Tahoe's wild spaces through our Environmental Venture Trust.”

All funds raised will stay local in that participating community. Future initiatives may entail social media campaigns, text-to-donate alerts, and signage in shops and visitor centers.

“Participating cities are not only committing to helping visitors do no harm when recreating, we’re providing ways for them to actively protect those wild places,” explained Visit Bend President and CEO Kevney Dugan. “Initiatives will range from breweries offering reusable coasters with Pledge for the Wild messaging, to multiple touchpoints prompting visitors to donate and support local conservation groups.”

To learn more about Pledge for the Wild, visit www.pledgewild.com.

Contacts:

Jenn Boyd, Tahoe South, 775-588-2412, jennifer@weidingerpr.com.
Tawna Fenske, Visit Bend, 541-382-8048, tawna@visitbend.com
Kevney Dugan, Visit Bend, 541-382-8048, kevney@visitbend.com