Formation and History of the Incliners
Sometime in late July, 1989 a group of 28 Incline residents were asked to meet with Doug Doolittle, Director of Parks and Recreation for IVGID. He proposed a seniors group sponsored by IVGID and asked these people to help get it off the ground. A second meeting along the same line was held approximately August 8, 1989 where the group charter was created, officer candidates selected, and August 22, 1989 selected as the kickoff and first general meeting date.
IVGID used the Kings Beach “Over50” Club mailing list and sent invitations to all Incline residents who were members of that club to attend a potluck meal on August 22. 88 people showed up at the “old” Chateau. Doug explained to them that a new group was being formed and presented the following slate of elected officers.
President: Gene Whitsitt
Vice President: Howard Kubel
Recording Secretary: Marian Turner
Corresponding Secretary: Ruby Hamilton
Treasurer: Emilie Williams
Director (2yr): Hugh Downer
Director (2yr): Audie Guthrie
Director (1yr): Barbara Sanderson
Regular meeting nights were selected to be the 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month.
Several committees were formed with volunteer chairs identified for each one. The committees included:
Board and Card Games
Cross Country Skiing
Hiking With Dogs
A Sunshine person was appointed to send "Get Well" cards to members who were ill or recovering from an accident. The Recording Secretary kept track of pertinent information such as, when and where activities took place and how many attended.
The first November potluck dinner meeting was held on November 6th, 1989 and was attended by 150 people. Afterwards, 16 people stayed to play bridge, 3 played Jenga and 15 played Scrabble. It was also decided that some activities could take place in Carson City during the winter and return to Lake Tahoe in the spring. Members were quick to participate in Downhill Skiing, Women’s Bridge, Hikes with Dogs, Bowling, Casino Outings, and Camera lub..
At the next Potluck a presentation was made by IVGID leaders on the proposed community center (Recreation Center) which was in its early planning stage.
On December 5th, 1989 the first Incliners Christmas Dinner and Dance was held at the “old” Chateau. 134 people attended. The dinner was catered at a cost of $13 per person.
Work quickly spread about the popularity of the various Incliners activities resulting in a rapid membership growth. By March, 1990, seven months after its formation, the Incliners membership had grown to 379.
In 1990, the Incliners helped with the Nevada State Special Olympics Winter Games held during February, 1990 at Incline Village.
Additional highlights of the remaining first year include:
A Tennis Club kicked off in the spring.
On April 3, a Hot Chili Night was held in place of the Potluck. The Incliners Board and their spouses cooked. Over 200 attendees came. Bridge and other games followed the dinner.
The Incliners Casino group joined with the King’s Beach Over 50s group for a joint casino night at the Crystal Bay Club.
Don Kornreich started a new group of Incliners to help build the Tahoe Rim Trail.
The first Incliners outing took place on May 24th. 21 Incliners went to the Vacaville Outlets followed by dinner in Rocklin. They used a Diamond Peak Ski bus for transportation. Cost was $15 per person.
For some unknown reason, the Golf group got off to a slow start in the first year and didn’t take hold until a few years later.
IVGID’s Recreation Department was very supportive of the Incliners as it grew during the first few years. It was basically self-supporting and provided a wide array of senior activities.
The Incliners two potluck per month format continued for several years. Besides the catered Christmas dinner, additional catered events were added in the third year for St. Patrick’s Day, Oktoberfest and Thanksgiving. Catering was provided by local caterers since IVGID did not yet offer such services.
The Incliners ran their own bar and beverage service at the Potlucks using a small committee to oversee the procurement, bartending and cleanup operations. Drinks were 50 cents each. The IVGID Food & Beverage manager took over these tasks in 2002 to avoid any issues over legal compliance.
The basic format has remained pretty much unchanged except there is one catered and one Potluck meeting each month now. The only membership restriction imposed was that the membership be limited to people 49+ years of age.
The growth and success of the Incliners has been a truly fantastic success story for which IVGID’s Parks & Recreation Department was recognized in 1992 and 1993 for program excellence by Nevada Recreation & Parks Society.
In parallel with the Incliners formation, IVGID was actively adding and improving many recreation related facilities including the Recreation Center (1992), Burnt Cedar Pavilion (2000), Skate Board Park (2001), Snowflake Lodge (2001), Champion Golf Course renovation (2003), Diamond Peak Quad Chair and expansion (2003), four new tennis courts (2003), and new Chateau (2004). The IVGID Recreation Department created a Seniors Group to oversee senior related exercise classes, recreation, transportation and other related activities.
In 2006, the IVGID Board of Trustees reviewed the status of the Incliners to clarify how its incorporation as a non-profit entity fit within IVGID. Several meetings we held to review the past, current and future plans of the Incliners. Issues were raised over Incliners autonomy, subsidized use of the Chateau and Aspen Grove, sale of alcohol at events and fees charged by IVGID for catered meals. It was determined that the size and functions of the Incliners could greatly enhance the financial subsidy from Washoe County for senior activities if it was made an integral part of the IVGID seniors’ program. Such arrangement could justify an increased County subsidy for a Director of Senior Programs to oversee all IVGID senior activities. Use of outside caterers that sold alcohol or use of IVGID caterers would resolve the issues of how food and alcohol were served at Incliners events. The Incliners Board added an additional seat for the IVGID Director of Senior Programs to help better coordinate Incliners activities with other Senior programs.
Due to the overlapping functions, many of the clubs operating under the Incliners umbrella were transferred to the IVGID Seniors program for oversight and management such as the Tennis, Golf, Camera Club, Hiking and other groups.
Incliners is now an integral part of the IVGID Seniors program primarily focused on social activities..
Summary of membership:
Original group: 26
End of first year: 150
End of second year: 300
End of third year: 600
Stabilized at 750 for a number of years
Peak membership: 930