By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
The Crestline Chamber of Commerce announced many of the upcoming fall activities at their public board meeting last week.
The big news is that Lake Gregory set its largest attendance figures ever this last summer with the beach area seeing over 88,000 visitors, tens of thousands more than the previous record of 55,000. The number of fishermen also greatly increased, probably partially as a result of the regular twice-monthly plantings of fish, which were advertised on social media.
Although the beach area of the lake has closed for the summer season, most of the other activities – such as hiking, boat rentals, tennis courts, basketball, skateboarding, and dog parks – are still open for use. Activities continue to occur. The upcoming P.J.’s in the Park with the movie Hotel Transylvania will begin at sunset on Saturday, Oct. 29 from 7 to 9 p.m., after the community trick or treat. The Friday night concert series and vendors marketplace will continue on the south shore beach through Nov. 4, weather permitting.
The community Halloween merchant trick or treat – a favorite with the kids – will be held on Saturday, Oct. 29 from 3 to 5 p.m. in both the Top Town and Lake Gregory business districts. Families may wander along the street where the merchants will have posters in their windows inviting the trick-or-treaters. Whole families have been known to dress up in costumes and walk the street that day, meeting up with friends and meeting the parents of their kids’ friends.
On Oct. 15, there will be a community cleanup day. Community volunteers will clean up the town after 100,000 visitors came to visit last summer. Those who want to spend a couple of hours helping in the cleanup may meet in the Lake Gregory parking lot, with free parking, where they will be given gloves, trash bags, and pick-ups to help clean the community of cigarette butts, thrown trash and other debris along the roadside and lakeshore. The chamber office, the Lake Gregory Company, and Lake Gregory Yacht Club are coordinating the volunteers who will walk the town since it needs some pre-winter help.
The chamber and its merchants are planning the annual Fall Festival, which occurs on Nov. 12 from 1 to 4 p.m. in Crestline’s Top Town area. During the Fall Festival, Top Town merchants offer family-friendly crafts and fun, live music, food, street chalk, a bounce house, and much more. This is being coordinated by the Top Town Chef and Hearth and Sage, both Top Town merchants.
Chamber President Michelle Hake announced the fall/winter edition of Crestline Magazine will be available in late October. Topics in this issue include winter activities throughout the mountain, at the lake, in the community, upcoming events, how to winterize your car, your home, and your life for those living on or visiting the mountain, and profiles of some local businesses and how they serve the community.
“Be sure you get and retain your copy as it will also contain a list of local merchants so you can easily contact them when you need their services,” said Hake, who added, “It will be mailed to local PO boxes.”
Crestline is planning its “Crestlights’ lighting program with contests for the best-decorated store and most festive home for the holiday and winter seasons. The chamber is planning some community up-lighting of the trees along Lake Drive to complement the individually lighted decorated buildings. This new idea about winter decorating of the town, as imagined by the Crestline Chamber of Commerce, was inspired by the way it is done in some European tourist towns all winter season long. The up-lighting on the trees is intended to remain through the winter season and into February, until the Mardi Gras Corks & Hops event.
The Corks & Hops events have been so successful this summer that they are planning a special Corks & Hops for February 18, with a Mardi Gras theme. To make it weatherproof, it will be held inside the San Moritz Lodge, with the various pour stations and food trucks set up inside the building or under the patio eaves. In case of lovely weather, some will be set up in the parking lot. Free parking is being offered that day at the San Moritz parking lot.
The Crestline Chamber of Commerce is an organization of local businessmen and women who try to make the town a better place for residents and visitors by working together in an organized effort. It is financially supported by TOT funding, membership fees, and volunteers at their activities.
The chamber is also seeking additional members to serve on its board of directors. The election is coming up in November. If you are interested, contact the chamber office by email at [email protected] or call them at (909) 338-2706. The chamber office and community visitors center, which is currently undergoing a complete redecoration and signage for better service to the community, is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.