Paint Tahoe blue

Photo/Sage Leehey

David von Seggern is the chair of the Toiyabe chapter of the Sierra Club, which is hosting a fundraiser on Sunday, June 15 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Sand Harbor State Park.

You’re having a fundraiser?

We’re doing a fundraiser up at Lake Tahoe on Sunday. Artists are coming up there. It’s a plein-air paint-in, and we’re calling it Paint Tahoe Blue. We’re expecting 15 or more artists to come up there and be painting during the day, and about 7 o’clock we’ll have an auction of the artists’ works. And we hope that goes really well, and this whole thing—the artists are being organized by Erik Holland. … He’s done this kind of thing before, so we think this will be a successful event. We’re hoping for a lot of people to turn out not just to help us but to help the artists.

And the proceeds go to whom?

The proceeds go to the Toiyabe chapter of the Sierra Club [and the artists].

What will the funds be used for?

The funds that we get are meant to protect Lake Tahoe. We’ve had a lot of expenses with trying to protect the lake up there lately, mostly a lawsuit we filed in February of 2013, which we’ve now taken to an appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court. So we need to replenish our funds.

How do you expect the turnout to be?

It looks like it’s going to be a beautiful day, but that’s eight days ahead in the forecast. People-wise, we’re hoping for a crowd on the order of 100. And we’ll be serving some wine and snack type foods and trying to keep people busy and happy. They can walk out and see what the artists are doing. The event is advertised as 4 to 8, but the artists will be up there all day. So people are welcome to come anytime.

And they’ll be painting Tahoe?

Well, they’ll be painting what they see as the Lake. Yeah, it’s supposed to be Tahoe paintings.

What other things will the Toiyabe chapter be doing in the future?

We see a couple really big issues in Nevada. One that’s looming, and we don’t know how this will develop. One thing is the state lands takeover of federal public lands by the state. There’s a commission working on that now. They’ll produce a report in August of this year to the state legislature. And depending on whether that gains any traction, we may have a big situation on our hands. We are always in favor of public lands and keeping lands public, and Nevada is blessed with a lot of public lands. … We may need some funds to have some experts look at this plan that the commission comes up and we may need some funds to do some state lobbying. That’s one thing. The other thing is the energy situation. We will do everything possible to keep Nevada in the forefront of the transition to clean and renewable energy, and Nevada should be in the forefront because we’re blessed with an abundance of solar energy, especially in the south, and an abundance of geothermal energy, especially here in the north. So we need to push the state to do things to make it attractive for people to do solar. We don’t have the best situation yet. … We will continue to push on that and that, too, takes state lobbying funds.