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In 1984 a small group of "Lassen" visitors gathered with then park superintendent Bill Stephenson to discuss starting a foundation to support projects in the national park. The later group incorporated as the Lassen Park Foundation and began its work to assist the National Park Service in raising private funds to do those things for which Federal funding fell short. Foremost in their thoughts was the creation of a true visitor center for Lassen Volcanic NP, which at the time was one of a few major national parks without a formal visitor center.  


Creation of “Lassen Crossroads”
When initial hopes to build a visitor center through the use of private funds were not realized, the Foundation recognized that Federal funds were necessary. Further, a Federally-imposed moratorium on building new visitor centers was in effect. It was not until 1994 that an appropriation, carried by a local congressman, allocated $384,000 for a visitor center at Lassen Volcanic National Park. In the meantime, the cost of the Foundation’s initial plans had risen, requiring that the project be redesigned. The redesign culminated in a joint project that brought together the U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service and Lassen Park Foundation to construct "Lassen Crossroads", a visitor orientation facility outside the northern entrance to Lassen Volcanic National Park. Dedicated in 2000, this facility is an unstaffed and seasonal orientation center which acquaints visitors with what they can see and do in the national park and on U.S. Forest lands.  


A Visitor Center at LVNP's Southwest Entrance
In 2000, Superintendent Marilyn H. Parris proposed erecting a year-round visitor center at the southwest entrance to Lassen Volcanic National Park. In the summer of 2005, Parris' successor, Mary Martin, arrived and oversaw completion of the design concept. Her successor, Darlene M. Koontz, dedicated the new Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center on Sept. 20, 2008.  


Lassen Peak Trail Restoration

Although the route we were forced to take was circuitous, our initial 1984 goal of building a visitor center at Lassen Volcanic National Park was attained because the staff at Lassen Volcanic National Park with the Lassen Park Foundation and its many volunteers and contributors were determined to get there. Similar resolve by the NPS and LPF was also directed toward renovating the Lassen Peak Trail. We intended to reach the peak, just as we did in helping the NPS build a visitor center, and used that phrase "Reach the Peak" to raise $500,000 that went directly to this restoration project. We accomplished the restoration of the trail in 2015, and during the centennial celebration of Lassen Volcanic National Park the refurbished Lassen Peak Trail was officially re-dedicated on July 30, 2016.


Today’s Lassen Park Foundation

The Foundation is committed to continuing to introduce deserving kids to national park and forest camping experiences and to funding important environmental studies and projects that would not otherwise occur without private donations. From 2015 through today we have raised over $480,000 toward the newly constructed Volcano Adventure Camp (VAC), the only youth camping facility at Lassen Volcanic National Park. The VAC began hosting youth groups participating in our Youth Camping Program for underserved youth in the summer of 2017, and continues to do so today.  We hope you will join with us in creating history in the Lassen area.