Shaver Lake open, Creek Fire fundraisers still scheduled despite National Forest closures


SHAVER LAKE, Calif. (KSEE) – Those planning to camp on U.S. Forest Service land for Labor Day weekend will have to reschedule.

Labor Day weekend is the busiest time of the year for Shaver Lake, with businesses using the revenue to hold them through the winter. Last year, Shaver was a ghost town after the Creek Fire ravaged the community.

This year, the U.S. Forest Service announced the closure of all California National Forests until September 17, which includes the Sierra National Forest and Sequoia National Forest.

“The point of the order is to mitigate the fire risk and it is difficult to do that if a large number of people are going into the forest to recreate,” said U.S. Forest Service-Sierra National Forest Supervisor Dean Gould. “By enlarge, we are not encouraging people to bring boats up or be recreating out in the forest.”

There are exemptions, like living on the property. U.S. Forest Service patrol will be out and people could face fines of up to $5,000 per person or $10,000 for an individual.

“Our primary focus is going to be education,” said Gould. “We are not looking to be heavy-handed in enforcing things.”

“A lot of people are asking if Shaver Lake will be open,” said Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig who represents the district. “The answer is yes.”

Shaver Lake is owned by Southern California Edison, not the U.S. Forest Service, and will be open to the public along with all of the businesses, Airbnbs, and Camp Edison.

Two Creek Fire rebuilding fundraisers are scheduled to happen at the Shaver Community Center Baseball Field on Saturday, which is the one-year anniversary of the blaze. The One-year-stronger Event will kick off at 10 a.m. for Creek Fire survivors and is open to all from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. The Rock to Rebuild will happen directly after and last until 10 p.m.

“The events are to help raise funds for Creek Fire victims and to not necessarily celebrate the destruction that we faced but to celebrate the growth that we have had in rebuilding from what was a devastating event,” said Lee.

China Peak is closed and although Huntington Lake is privately owned, to get to it you have to go on a forest road, which is closed.

The closure ends on September 17 but could be extended.

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