By Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey
Since Kaniksu Land Trust announced in March that friends of the trust were under contract to purchase the long-loved Pine Street Sled Hill — thus giving the nonprofit time to fundraise the $2.1 million needed to secure the 48-acre property — KLT Executive Director Katie Cox said it has become apparent that this is an opportunity people are eager to be a part of.
“It’s been amazing to see everybody contributing to this,” she said, “and knowing what a legacy moment this is for our community — to be able to save this forever.”
The sled hill served as an informal wintertime recreation area for decades, before property owners closed the area to the public during the winter of 2020 due to possible liability issues. When the property — which includes not only the hill but also forestland, an orchard, a large pond and homestead structures — went up for sale, KLT set its sights on expanding the public access already established on the neighboring 180-acre Pine Street Woods.
Cox told the Reader that as of Oct. 17, KLT had raised about $1.32 million of its $2.1 million goal.
The public will have the chance to contribute to the cause and see the property firsthand as KLT and Evans Brothers Coffee host a Sled Hill Sneak Peek event on Saturday, Oct. 22 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The event will feature coffee tasting at five stations around the property — located at 11735 W. Pine St. — meant to highlight different features of the sled hill and beyond.
“As you go around tasting the coffee and pastries, you’ll also learn a little bit about the vision for the sled hill,” Cox said.
Tickets to the Sled Hill Sneak Peek are $35, and include all five tasting stations, featuring baked goods from Winter Ridge and Rustique Bakery paired with special reserve blends by the experts at Evans Brothers.
“It’s really fun how Evans Brothers is figuring out what kind of pastry will taste good with this kind of coffee,” Cox said, noting that this is a unique opportunity perfect for “a Saturday morning in Sandpoint.”
Attendees are invited to bring their own mug to the event or purchase a commemorative “Save the Sled Hill” mug. There will also be tea provided.
While the event begins at 10 a.m., Cox said people are welcome to embark on the self-guided tasting tour any time during the three-hour event window.
“It’s a little bit of a paradise up there,” she said, “and a lot of people haven’t had the chance to explore beyond the sled hill.”
Purchase tickets at kaniksu.org/happenings, and learn more by calling KLT at 208-263-9471 or emailing [email protected].
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