Bear Valley buyers group gains ground

By Mike Morris, The Union Democrat

Representatives with Bear Valley Mountain Cooperative say they're closing in on their membership goal to run the mountain as a community-owned resort.

The group says members must register by July 15 and pay by July 25 to have their membership count in a potential vote to purchase the ski area.

As of Thursday, the group had reached 87 percent of its membership goal.

"We feel we have achieved what is our tipping point," said Mike Wallenfels, a Bay Area resident who owns a home in Bear Valley and sits on the group's interim board of directors.

A share in the co-op costs $2,500, which would be refunded if the sale does not go through. Along with being a voting member, benefits include discounted ski passes and other perks.

The group hopes to purchase the ski area - off upper Highway 4 in western Alpine County - in August so it can perform summertime grooming and snowmaking improvements prior to the 2014-15 ski season.

"Right now, we're communicating with the owners very actively," Wallenfels said.

For the full story, see the Friday, July 11, edition of The Union Democrat.

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