A local company with close historical ties to Lake Gregory Regional Park will take over management of the alpine recreation getaway under a 15-year contract unanimously approved by the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, Feb. 9.
“Over the years, residents have consistently called for local management of Lake Gregory, and I don’t know if you can get any more local than Thousand Pines Christian Camp,” said Second District Supervisor Janice Rutherford, who represents the Crestline area on the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors. “They’ve been operating a thriving camp and conference center less than a mile from Lake Gregory for more than 80 years, so they understand this community as well as the recreation business and what it’s going to take to make Lake Gregory a success.”
Thousand Pines Christian Camp submitted a bid to take over management of the park last year after the previous concessionaire’s contract expired.
San Bernardino County Regional Parks operated the lake until 2013 when the Board of Supervisors hired a private company to manage the lake, which was losing more than $700,000 annually.
Under the contract approved Tuesday, the county will pay an annual management fee of $50,000 to the company through Dec. 31, 2023, if the annual gross income is below $1.25 million and will not pay a management fee if the annual gross income is above that amount.
In addition, the county will set aside $1.65 million for capital improvements, repairs, deferred maintenance and modernization projects at the park that are agreed to by both parties.
Thousand Pines Camp is forming a limited liability company called the Lake Gregory Community Recreation Co. to manage the park. Once the company is officially formed, which is expected to happen this week, Chairman Curt Hagman can execute the agreement to operate the park.
Thousand Pines Christian Camp was founded in 1939 after Arthur Gregory Sr., who constructed Lake Gregory, donated 10 acres he owned nearby to start a Baptist camp. Gregory was a successful citrus farmer from Redlands who used timber felled in the local mountains to construct crates to distribute his fruits.