| TahoeDailyTribune.com

Incline Village sisters launch new business, EverGreens Juicery

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — After throwing around the idea for almost three years, sisters Emme and Maea Wistrom followed their passion and opened EverGreens Juicery.

The delivery-based, cold-press juice business began in 2019 while the now Sierra Nevada University alumnus were participating in business competitions.

Maea Wistrom (left) and Emme Wistrom invested three years in planning EverGreens Juicery before finally making their dreams into reality in 2019. Provided
Maea Wistrom

“So it started as she [Emme] would have these ideas, and then I’ve used them as projects for class and we’d work on them together,” Maea Wistrom said. “And EverGreens was the one that we ended up doing multiple projects on throughout my years in the business program.”

Their pitch, which did not place during the 2019 SNU Business Pitch Competition, ended up growing into a profitable business that sells out quickly every week. Through their website, North Tahoe customers can custom order juices, and on Sunday’s, have them delivered to their home.

“We start with recipe tasting,” Emme Wistrom said. “We probably make it five to 10 times before we’re like, ‘Okay, this is actually good juice.’ Then we have to weigh it all out.”

The Incline Village-based entrepreneurs explained that each juice is specialized not only by the flavors, but by the nutrients present in each juice.

“Our recipes go by weight,” Maea Wistrom said. “Every juice is made to order. Every juice is individually weighed out. So a lot of times we have these weirdly shaped chunks of ginger carrot, and that was the exact weight.”

Their green juices and ’Blush’ juice are some of the most popular flavors. Provided
Maea Wistrom

Weighing the products ensures maximum nutrients in each juice. Another way to ensure the best quality product, according to the Wistrom sisters, is through unpasteurized product.

“Basically, with the juicer we have, it doesn’t use any heat to juice and heating it kills the nutrients,” Maea Wistrom said. “So the way that we juice, all the nutrients stay intact in the final juice product. But that just means it doesn’t have as long of a shelf life. So if we were to put it on shelves in a grocery store to sell, we’d have to pasteurize it so that it would last longer, but it would then have 50% of the nutrients. So it just wouldn’t be as good of a product in our opinion.”

The duo has been testing the waters on different channels to get their juice to customers, but have hit major roadblocks along the way.

“Cold-pressed juices are kind of a new thing,” Emme Wistrom said. “So the regulations on it are pretty intense, but they’re [The Food and Drug Administration] trying to make it easier for small businesses to get into it.”

Maea Wistrom explained a lot of their planning for future business plans comes down to sustainability as well.

“If we’re pasteurizing it to sell in stores, then all that juice has to go by three or four days, it’s shelf life would be in a store, and then if it doesn’t get sold, we just juiced all that produce and the juice didn’t even get used,” Maea Wistrom said. “So then it’s a sustainability thing too, where it’s just producing more food waste, where if it could last longer, then it wouldn’t be too wasteful.”

But that can’t happen until they get bigger equipment to produce more juice. But the team only views the obstacle as something to work towards. That’s only one of their goals for EverGreens Juicery.

“I think our biggest goal, and we’re not sure whether this is going to take one year or 10 years,” Emme Wistrom said, “but our biggest goal would be to have an actual juice bar where we have smoothie bowls, smoothies, small meal type items, and stuff like that. But for the short future, I think our goal is to just branch out into the Truckee and Tahoe City communities … and reach families.”

These evolving goals are ones that the Wistrom’s have been brainstorming for years, but they noted that even after launching their business successfully, some people still doubt their abilities as business owners.

“One of the challenges that I’ve had is looking at places to rent,” Emme Wistrom said.

The pair were in the process of signing a lease before COVID hit in early 2020, and eventually decided to stay delivery only. But Emme Wistrom noted that it was hard to get people to treat her like a serious renter.

“When I go and show up at these places with a realtor, they’re like, ‘Oh, you’re the one coming.’ And then they will ask me about my parents, what they’re doing. So that’s kind of been a let down, when they don’t take you seriously.”

Maea Wistrom noticed that while she got texts from a friend occasionally with an idea, many of the people offering “advice” seemed to doubt the team as well.

“I think the amount of unsolicited business advice that I’ve gotten is a little bit ridiculous,” Maea Wistrom said. “There’s a lot of people that I graduated with and went to school with that just send me out of the blue messages about it. As if we hadn’t spent the last three years thinking about what we can do and why that idea wouldn’t work.”

Maea explained that she’ll be approached while out in public and have peers question her profit margins.

“Everyone’s always so shocked to see that it is a profitable business because everyone in business has the idea of, if it’s not some huge money machine, then what’s the point?” Maea Wistrom said. “It’s just a small passion project. It makes money. It’s not making millions of dollars, but it doesn’t have to.”

The Wistrom sisters have proved their ability to overcome every obstacle in their path so far. Now all they can do is expand.

“It’s been mostly Incline for now, but we’re actually going to rent in Truckee,” Emme Wistrom said. “So we’re hoping we can advertise more on Truckee Facebook pages and branch out into Truckee more.”

For more information, visit evergreensjuicery.com.

Incline defense dominates vs. Silver Stage in season finale

Quarterback senior Dylan Cleary runs for a first quarter touchdown on Saturday. Provided

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Silver Stage kept passing and Incline kept plucking them out of the sky.

The Highlanders intercepted seven passes, and also recovered two fumbles, Saturday in a season-ending 58-8 drubbing of the Nighthawks in Silver Springs.

Incline’s seniors enjoyed playing together one final time on Saturday. Provided

The Incline offense didn’t have to do much, or go very far to score due to the defense creating nine turnovers.

In all, the Highlanders gained 220 yards, 197 coming on the ground.

Quarterback Dylan Cleary led the rushing attack with 68 yards on six attempts and started the scoring with a 4-yard run in the first quarter.

Incline made it 14-0 when a Cleary pass connected with Brody Thralls for a 3-yard score.

Sophomore Joe Duran scored the first of his three touchdowns from two yards out late in the opening quarter.

Cleary again connected with Thralls for another TD in the second quarter, this one from 17 yards.

Silver Stage got on the board to narrow the score to 28-8, but the Highlanders ran away and hid.

Brad rye runs for a big gain on Saturday. Provided

Tyler Manship converted an 18-yard field goal, Brad Rye scored on an 18-yard scamper and Duran closed the half with his second score to make it 44-8 at the break.

Duran added a 10-yard TD run in the third quarter and Rye capped off the celebration with an interception that he returned 20 yards for a score.

Rye finished with 57 yards on five carries and sophomore Joe Duran gained 54 yards on seven totes.

Three different Highlanders had two interceptions, including Rye, Alex Baker and Nick Suter. Rye had four interceptions in the five games and Suter had three. In all, Incline intercepted 12 passes and recovered six fumbles in five games.

Jack Reber led the defense with nine tackles while thralls had five tackles and two sacks and Christopher Vaughn and Royce Stonebreaker each had sacks. Reber and Marco Resendiz recovered fumbles.

Incline (4-1) finished the season with four straight victories after losing their season opener to Pershing County in double overtime. The Highlanders outscored their opponents 175-48.

Rally planned in memory of bear killed at Tahoe Vista

Community members have organized a rally on Saturday in support of a bear that was trapped and killed on Friday with the authorization of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

“It’s a memorial service,” said Anne Bryant, executive director of the Bear League. “We lost a neighbor, a member of our community.”

According to Bryant a trap was set on Wildwood Drive in Tahoe Vista after a bear repeatedly broke into the car of a homeowner. The trap was triggered by a bear at around 2 a.m. and was taken away early Friday morning.

The homeowner was granted a depredation permit by the Department of Fish and Wildlife to have the bear killed. The department issues depredation permits to homeowners with property damage caused by a bear. The permit allows a licensed trapper to set the trap and euthanize the bear, according to Peter Tira, information officer for the department.

The bear’s death caused sparked outrage in the community after the Bear League posted about the events on its Facebook page.

“The community has been circling to gather their thoughts, anger and sorrow over what has happened,” said Cheri Snook, organizer of the event. “We just want to bring people together and memorialize the bear that has been taken away.”

The rally is planned to start at 11:30 a.m. Saturday at 7010 North Lake Blvd., Tahoe Vista. It will include a circle of memorial for bears, a speech from Bryant and live music by Regegade Hombres.

Hannah Jones is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. She can be reached at 530-550-2652 or hjones@sierrasun.com.

Weather service calling for snow at Lake Tahoe; passes could receive up to 4 inches

The National Weather Service in Reno has issued a special weather statement for snowfall in the Lake Tahoe area for South Lake Tahoe, Stateline, Incline Village, Glenbrook and Tahoe City.

A low pressure system is likely to bring light snowfall to the Sierra as well as southern Lyon and far western Mineral counties in Nevada, mainly above 6,500 to 7,000 feet, Tuesday night into Wednesday, according to the NWS.

Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe, Spooner Summit, Carson, Ebbetts and Sonora passes all could receive 2-4 inches of snow.

Although snow accumulations appear to be light, NWS is urging drivers to be cautious during the hazardous driving conditions, including leaving more space while following vehicles. 

Precipitation is forecast to diminish by Wednesday evening but temperatures will be cold enough to refreeze any melting that may take place during the day, NWS said.

Northeast winds Wednesday will be around 10 mph with gusts up to 20 mph.

It’s a good time to make sure cars are prepared for winter, including an ice scraper or snowbrush, gloves and winter clothing, blanket, emergency flares, salt or sand, first aid kit, flashlight and extra windshield solution.

Temperatures stay cool the rest of the week after the low pressure system leaves the basin Wednesday night.

The high Thursday may reach 40 with the low in the mid 20s and Friday through the weekend high temps will be around 45 with the low in the high 20s.

Incline Village court piloting virtual traffic court for Nevada

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Nevada is launching its first virtual traffic court in Incline Village-Crystal Bay Township Justice Court.

“Many of the parties who appear at our traffic arraignment court sessions are from out of the area and requiring them to drive hours to appear can create a significant hardship, increased costs and lost wages from time off of work,” said Presiding Judge E. Alan Tiras in a press release. He went on to say, “it is important to provide for ready and convenient access to the court, particularly for minor interactions.”

Virtual sessions will be held on the first Tuesday of every month at 1:30 p.m.

According to the press release, the sessions have had low attendance so far but Tiras thinks attendance will continue to increase.

The courts are also considering expanding use for the virtual sessions, such as witness testimony. This court is acting as a pilot program for the rest of the state.

“We’re serving as a pilot program for other courts statewide and will be presenting the virtual traffic court to other Nevada state traffic courts at an upcoming judges’ conference,” Tiras said. “We believe that this technology can plug into other courts’ case management systems readily without extensive or expensive modifications. It was designed with that in mind. Hopefully, the courts and the public will find all of this to be beneficial and it will provide increased efficiency, effectiveness and cost savings.”

To find out more, visit www.ivcbcourt.com.

Perfect plan, perfect race: Incline’s Pietzke wins cross country state championship

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Niklas Pietzke had the perfect plan, ran the perfect race and dominated his competition.

The Incline High School junior broke away from the pack late during the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association Class 2A State Cross Country Championships and finished 17 seconds clear of his next competitor to win the title.

He was 29 seconds ahead of third place and finished nearly a minute ahead of fourth place on the 5,000-meter course at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in Reno.

“It feels really good,” Pietzke told the Tribune. “I felt really proud that all the hard work I put in throughout the season paid off.”

Pietzke helped the Highlanders to a second place finish as a team with North Tahoe using its depth to claim the team crown.

“It was the best possible outcome for us, both individually and as a team,” said Highlanders head coach Ross McMahan. “It was a team effort, we earned second place by just a couple of points and the kids knew everybody they passed was going to matter and they gave all they had. It was a good day for Incline.”

McMahan said that he, assistant coach Thomas Reymer, Pietzke and his parents collaborated to come up with the best plan to beat Teagan Hansen, a senior from Sierra Lutheran that has beaten Pietzke in every other competition leading up to the state event.

And that plan was to stick to Hansen and not let him have any space out front.

“In the past, Teagan would get a small gap and it would never change and wouldn’t get any bigger,” McMahan said.

Pietzke said he was surprised when Hansen didn’t start strong and finally got fed up with the slow pace after the first mile.

“I decided to take the lead at about halfway and went hard up a hill,” Pietzke said. “Teagan stayed with me and took the lead for a bit after the hill but I followed right behind, I never let him get more than a couple of meters ahead.”

Pietzke grabbed back the lead in the final mile and never was challenged again.

Pietzke last year lost to Hansen at the regional meet by 25 seconds and then lost again by 17 seconds the next week at state.

This year, Pietzke was within 10 seconds a couple of weeks ago at the regional meet, before blowing by him for the state crown in a time of 16 minutes, 55 seconds.

“I was really proud to finally beat him,” Pietzke said.

Pietzke had time to catch his breath after crossing the finish line and went back to cheer on his team, including younger brother, Brendan.

The older Pietzke may have started a streak where his family owns 2A cross country in Nevada for the next three years.

Brendan Pietzke was the fastest freshman in the race, just like Niklas was when he was a ninth grader.

The frosh crossed the line in eighth place in 18:15, five spots and 12 seconds ahead of the next freshman from Southern Nevada.

“It was good to run with my brother,” Niklas said. “I think he definitely looks up to me and it’s nice to have someone to train with. He had a really great season, was the fastest frosh and ran really well.”

The third fastest freshman in the field was Incline’s Luc Casini, who finished as the third fastest Highlander in 26th place in 20:12.

Highlander sophomore Jimmy Cleary was right behind in 27th (20:21) in the 49-runner field.

Incline finished with 41 points, two better than Silver Stage and 25 behind North Tahoe.

Following the race, McMahan noticed his team was already talking about next year.

“We have no seniors, just one junior and freshmen and sophomores and as amazing as this season was, the kids are already talking about next year,” McMahan said. “We’ve got a good group of eighth graders coming up next year and we’re looking forward to next year and bigger and better things to come.”

Hyatt Regency hosting 24-hour bike-a-thon fundraiser for Incline Elementary School

INCLINE VILLAGE, Calif. — The Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, Spa and Casino is hosting a 24-hour bike-a-thon on Tuesday, Nov. 19.

The event, called “Ride and Raise,” will raise funds for Incline Elementary School for their Health and Wellness Science Booster Committee.

Eighteen riders will ride stationary Peloton bikes located in the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe fitness center.

“We are thrilled to host our second Ride & Raise of the year to support Incline Elementary and raise health and wellness awareness for our youth of the future,” said Michael Murphy, General Manager of the resort. “We’ve chosen this organization because of their focus on overall health and wellness for our future generations something that our resort is very passionate about.”

The event will start at 4 p.m. on Nov. 19 and will end at 4 p.m. Nov. 20.

Patrons can make a flat donation or sponsor a rider on a pledge per mile basis.

To make a donation, visit fundly.com/ride-and-raise2019.

To find out more, email the resort at hyattlaketahoe@hyatt.com.

Some agents at Lake Tahoe may seek greener pastures (Opinion)

With night time temperatures dipping below freezing, it signals the change from autumn to winter for both nature and the local real estate agents.

Since coming out of the recession many years ago, the number of real estate agents practicing in our community and nationwide has increased substantially. However, we have returned to a situation where there are far more agents than listings and nearly as many agents as there are transactions each year. Historically, the Incline Village and Crystal Bay real estate market has been one of the most competitive places in the world for agents and brokers.

The reality is that a small percentage of agents will do the lion’s share of the business in our local market handling 15-plus transaction sides annually. More than half the agents will handle zero to two transactions as is typical in our local market.

During the past year, the number and size of Incline Village real estate brokerage firms remained relatively static.

With so much business being conducted on the Internet and agents able to work efficiently from a home office, it’s no longer important for the major brokerage offices to keep expanding their square footage unless absolutely necessary.

As the year comes to an end, agents and brokers will begin planning for 2020.

The New Year also brings the largest quarterly statement from our real estate board; which includes charges for local, state and national association dues.

This is the time when many agents contemplate whether to renew their membership, consider a change of brokerage or possibly seek alternative sources of income.

It is much easier for an agent in our market to switch brokerage firms between November and April than during the busy summer season.

Due to the slower pace of activity, you can change brokers and rebrand yourself during the off-season with fewer disruptions to the flow of business.

Whether changing firms is beneficial depends on a number of factors and the goals of each agent. But every year several agents will change offices or on occasion even get a broker’s license and open their own office, in the hopes of achieving better performance.

Agents who have enjoyed a stellar year will use the off season to contemplate the current commission arrangement they have with their broker and sometimes try to renegotiate more favorable terms.

It’s always a little bit of a cross between a tug o’ war and a balancing act whenever agents and brokers sit down to discuss compensation packages.

Since each broker is free to utilize whatever compensation structure they deem appropriate, it can often be a case of comparing apples and oranges when agents try to analyze offers from multiple firms and decide what course of action to take.

The property management and vacation rental firms in town have remained fairly stable in the past year.

This industry has undergone a revolution during the past decade with the advent of online booking and the proliferation of websites such as VRBO.com and AirBnB. Both vacation renters and long-term tenants have more choices than ever before and the rental agencies have ratcheted up their service several notches to meet customer demand.

Employee turnover is the bane of every rental agency. Having an intimate knowledge of the property inventory and our local amenities is important to being successful in the rental business, especially in a mountain resort community.

While there is always some turnover from time to time at the staff level, the ownership and management of the half dozen or so major rental firms has remained fairly constant.

Those who are still thriving are the ones who innovate and continue to work hard and build their businesses into the future.

Don Kanare is the founder and Sabrina Belleci is the owner and broker of RE/MAX North Lake in Incline Village. You can follow their blog at www.InsideIncline.com.

Bear killed in Tahoe Vista sparks community outrage

A bear that was trapped and killed early Friday morning has sparked outrage in the community after the Bear League posted about the events on its Facebook page

According to Ann Bryant, executive director of the Bear League, a trap was set by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife on Wildwood Drive in Tahoe Vista after a bear repeatedly broke into the car of a homeowner. The trap was triggered by a bear at around 2 a.m. and was taken away early Friday morning.

CDFW said in an email that it does not trap and kill problem bears, but issues permits to licensed trappers who then set traps and euthanize the bears when the department determines it to be necessary.

“Killing a bear has never been the solution,” said Bryant. “The bears are fine as long as you don’t invite them by leaving food in your car or your bird feeder out. It’s the simple dos and don’ts of living in bear country.”

Bryant said she received multiple calls from concerned neighbors when they saw that the trap was set and immediately got in contact with CDFW.

A Facebook post from the Bear League had nearly 700 comments and over 650 shares. Bryant said they deleted the post from the league’s Facebook page after a comment was left threatening to burn the homeowner’s house down.

Hannah Jones is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. She can be reached at 530-550-2652 or hjones@sierrasun.com.

CORRECTION: This story has been changed to reflect that the California Department of Fish and Wildlife does not trap and kill problem bears. According to officials, the department issues permits to licensed trappers who then set traps and euthanize the bears when the department determines it to be necessary.

Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows opens for the 2019-20 season

SQUAW VALLEY, Calif. — Temperatures in the Truckee-Tahoe area are forecast to remain sunny and warm through the early parts of next week, but that isn’t stopping Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows from opening parts of the mountain to the public.

Following weeks of preparation and snowmaking at every opportunity, the resort is slated to open for the 2019-20 season on Friday.

Opening day at Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows will feature skiing, riding, snow tubing, and giveaways. Alpine Meadows will have access to intermediate terrain via Kangaroo Run, along with beginner terrain and snow tubing at Squaw Valley’s SnoVentures Activity Zone. The Squaw Kids area will also be open for youth lessons. Lifts will spin 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

When conditions allow, Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows is able to make use of more than 300 snowmaking guns. The resort has reportedly invested more than $9 million in snowmaking during the past nine years.

“The resort team will continue to make snow at every opportunity, and open more terrain as weather and conditions allow,” said Liesl Hepburn, public relations director for Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, in an email to the Sun.