Sky Tavern announces $1 million challenge grant

The nonprofit Sky Tavern ski area is located at 21130 Sky Tavern Road in Reno.

The nonprofit Sky Tavern ski area is located at 21130 Sky Tavern Road in Reno. Courtesy Photo

In partnership with the E. L. Wiegand Foundation, Reno’s Sky Tavern Ski Area recently secured a challenge grant from the foundation for $1 million to install snowmaking equipment.

According to a Dec. 7 press release, the grant will help transform the 73-year-old nonprofit ski resort “into a modern ski operation that can accommodate the region’s growing demand from snow enthusiasts.”

The cost to install a snowmaking system at Sky Tavern is estimated at $2.4 million. According to the challenge agreement, Sky Tavern is tasked with raising the remaining $1.4 million by 2023.

“We are thrilled and so grateful to the E.L. Wiegand Foundation for their faith in Sky Tavern,” Yale Spina, chairman of the Sky Tavern Board of Directors, said in a statement. “While this is a conditional grant, it encourages others in our community who believe in the great work that we have been doing for the last 73 years. Now more than ever, the affordable programs we provide are teaching kids valuable life skills, like courage and confidence.”

Located at 21130 Sky Tavern Road near Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe, 
Sky Tavern is home of the award-winning Reno Junior Ski Program founded by Marce Herz in 1948. Since its inception, more than 100,000 children have learned to ski or snowboard.

Recently, the nonprofit ski area was awarded a 50-year lease to continue operating the program, with the intent to ensure its existence and encourage growth.

“Snowmaking will enable Sky Tavern to operate more consistently and sustainably, and it is the key to the future for Sky Tavern,” Skip Avansino, chairman of the E. L. Wiegand Foundation, said in a statement. “We are pleased to make this grant that will serve to help expose more and more of our area’s youth to the wonderful opportunities associated with outdoor winter activities.”


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