Sacred Rocks Reserve and RV Park, located at 3,900 feet in the mountains east of San Diego, pledges to become the “Greenest RV Park in America”
January 31, 2010 (Boulevard) ― It’s a “go green” world these days, even in places where you might not expect it. Several years ago, the owners of Sacred Rocks Reserve and RV Park, located in the mountains east of San Diego, had a mission to become “The Greenest RV Park in America,” and set about establishing eco-friendly practices throughout the park.
Their efforts were recently recognized by ARVC (National Association of RV Parks & Campgrounds), which awarded the RV Park the “Plan-it Green Award” for 2009.
“We set our intention some time ago,” says Sharon Courmousis, who owns Sacred Rocks Reserve with her husband Dimitri, “and it’s wonderful to be honored in this way.”
The couple removed almost 80 TONS of trash from the property in the first year that they owned it (2003) and recycled 850 abandoned tires that had been discarded on the property. Rescuing hundreds of 400-year-old oaks on the property from insect infestations, installing tank-less hot water heaters and a salt-water pool generator as well as using recycled materials for RV site foundations were just a few of the steps the couple took to “green” their Park.
“We asked what we could do more to make the park earth friendly and we listened and learned,” says Courmousis.
“ARVC is proud to award Sacred Rocks Reserve the Plan-It Green Award. Their dedication to preserving the environment in and around their parks, while educating both staff and guests about the benefits of being 'green', exemplifies what it means to be good stewards of the earth,” says Kera Khalil Tomlin, Director of Marketing & Communications for ARVC. “We appreciate Sacred Rocks Reserve for being a leader in ARVC's Plan-It Green program."
Truly green pioneers in the RV Park industry, the 163-acre resort and wilderness preserve, located at the 3,900-foot level near the oak- and pine-dotted town of Boulevard, was the first RV Park in the nation to offer solar-powered park models, which can be used as weekend retreats or vacation cottages.
Manufactured by Phoenix-based Cavco Industries, the cottage-style park models are equipped with solar panels that can save consumers anywhere between 25 and 75 percent on their utility bills. These environmentally friendly cottages can be made using bamboo flooring and other recycled materials.
Part of Sacred Rocks Reserve’s mission is to educate guests and campers who visit their property about how to become more ecologically conscious. The park implemented strict guidelines about using only native, “recycled” firewood (from fallen trees and branches), helping to avoid the spread of pest infestations by not allowing guests to bring in their own firewood. Well-water in the park is pumped into a tank from aquifers, lakes 380 feet underground, and gravity-fed to each campsite. All guests are encouraged to use water conservation techniques, and required to use only biodegradable products in septic tanks and for washing dishes. Drought tolerant landscaping is carefully chosen for the park and education about native plants is encouraged among park staff and guests.
Every spring, Sacred Rocks offers a Spring Planting Event that is open to the public, as well as a guided “Spring Bloom Walk” with a local botanist. April 24, 2010 is the target date for this year’s Spring Planting Event.
“Our hope is that if we help people to have an appreciation for the earth, and the plants and wildlife that live here too, they may better understand the necessity for preserving our natural resources,” Courmousis explains. She adds that many guests who come there to camp, learn something about green /conservation practices that they take home with them and make a part of their daily lives.
“We have been made stewards and caretakers of this beautiful land,” she continues, “and we intend to fulfill this sacred trust with every effort we undertake, so that it will continue to be here for people of future generations to explore and enjoy.”
Sacred Rocks Reserve is located at 1331 Shasta Way in Boulevard, California. Reservations are required. For information, call: 619-766-4480 or visit: www.sacredrocksreserve.com.