Vail’s EpicPromise: Powering Community and Conservation

League to Save Lake Tahoe
June 28, 2024

Vail Resorts’ EpicPromise showcases how a company can lift up the community and steward the environment right outside its own front door. The program is designed to support the health and sustainability of mountain communities through charitable giving, employee volunteerism, and operational initiatives aimed at preserving the natural environment.  

EpicPromise and the League to Save Lake Tahoe 

The League to Save Lake Tahoe is thrilled to be a recipient of a 2024-2025 EpicPromise grant in support of the League’s litter initiative, including community cleanups, the Tahoe Blue Crew program, deployment of BEBOT (beach-cleaning robots), data-to-solutions projects (including prevention of single-use plastic litter), and the Tahoe Blue Beaches program. These pollution-fighting projects and programs are critical for protecting the Lake’s clarity and sustaining the Tahoe Basin’s health and beauty. 

Meet Cara Bourne: Passionate Volunteer 

Cara Bourne, EpicPromise program volunteerCara Bourne, a Business Manager for Skier Services at Kirkwood Mountain Resort (part of Vail Resorts), has been actively volunteering with the League for the past five years. An outdoor enthusiast, she can be found mountain biking on Tahoe’s incredible trails or cruising on her stand-up paddleboard on the Lake. Her passion for Lake Tahoe and dedication to environmental stewardship and community service exemplify the spirit of the EpicPromise program. 

Cara’s love for Lake Tahoe blossomed as a child, bringing her back years later. She recalls, “I was lucky enough to come here as a kid with my family and definitely fell in love with it. So, when I was looking around for places to go after college, it was top of the list.” Her experiences as a volunteer have deepened her connection to Tahoe. 

Positive Impact 

Cara shared her thoughts on the importance of the League’s community events. She noted, “Even though I think the trash cleanups are so effective, Tahoe Forest Stewardship Day at Saxon Creek (in September 2023) was really awesome – seeing that the willows take root a little bit more each season and getting to be able to come back and see it grow over time.” 

Her commitment is evident as she consistently brings other Kirkwood employees to participate, fostering a culture of volunteerism. Cara also appreciates the tangible impact of these efforts: “It seems like they [the League’s community events] are more abundant, which is awesome, whether it’s a big scale event, like the July 5th cleanup, or smaller bike path cleanups.” 

EpicPromise and Employee Engagement 

EpicPromise doesn’t just support community initiatives financially, it also encourages Vail employees to get in on the action. Cara elaborates, “We partner a lot with the League, Bread and Broth, and other organizations in the community. It’s awesome to see our employees giving back, getting involved, and the company supporting that in many ways.”  

Cara also highlighted how the League’s staff help educate and guide volunteers: “One thing that’s really cool about the League is that when you start one of those days or projects, it seems like the leaders always really try to educate us, ‘why are we doing this.’ Even if we’re on a site that’s quite a ways from the Lake, educating us on how our work up here is going to help the Lake.” 

Looking Forward 

With the support of Vail’s EpicPromise, the League continues to make significant strides in protecting and preserving Lake Tahoe. Cara’s story is a testament to the power of partnerships to steward the environment and engage the Tahoe community. By continuing to work together, we can ensure a cleaner, healthier future for Lake Tahoe. 

Join the Cause 

Learn more about the League’s community events and how you can get involved. Your support is crucial to our mission; every contribution helps us continue our vital work to Keep Tahoe Blue. Donate today. 

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