Getting involved in the system

A group of seven Obama supporters, using how-to-have-a-bake-sale instructions from, set up last weekend with baked goods from cookies to sweet potato pie in Wingfield Park to raise money for their candidate.

They said they had no problem for quite a while. Then, they said, they were kicked out of the park by Reno police.

“We were there for about an hour, made a couple of hundred dollars,” said Rebecca Tolen, one of the seven. “They closed us down and made us go away.

“We drove around looking for some place to resume the sale,” she said. “And then—it was getting late, we were a little tired—so what we ended up doing was taking [the treats] to the tent city.”

Reno Police Department spokesperson Steve Frady reported Tuesday that a park ranger and a police officer asked the group to end their sales because they did not have a permit or a health certificate.

“The interesting part to me was that they sat there on their bicycles and watched us for an hour and a half and let this happen and then when business picked up and we started being very successful, that’s when they swooped down,” Tolen said.

Members of the group were acting on their own, not affiliated with the local Democratic or Obama organizations. They just wanted to help the candidate.

“Most of the grandmas and children who contributed Rice Krispie treats are not members of any particular organization. … They just wanted to support Obama on Juneteenth,” Tolen said.