Moms on the Mountains returns to raise money for Nevada City School District students |

Moms on the Mountains returns to raise money for Nevada City School District students

Moms on the Mountains, a fundraiser organized by the parents of the Nevada City School District to raise fund for arts and science programs at the district, is coming back after a three-year hiatus. Members will participate in a hiking trip at Sugar Bowl Mountain Resort on Oct.1 to raise money to enhance education experience for students.
Submitted Photo |

Twenty-one years ago, two moms in the Nevada City School District saw the need to enhance arts and technology school programs in the district and decided to take matters into their own hands.

They came up with a creative idea that would both raise money to create a stimulating learning experience for students and ensure that the participants are treated to a day of exercise, great food, shopping, and friendship-building.

“What is so nice about it is it’s a day where there is no responsibilities. So the kids are with the dads, and it’s just a day where the moms get to focus on them,” said Monica Daugherty, principal of Deer Creek Elementary School and a member of the group since 2001.

The Moms on the Mountains, a group formed by Wendy Riley and Vicki Parker in 1995 with the intent of raising money for children in the district, will make a comeback after a three-year hiatus in the form of an Oct. 1 hiking trip.

Registration takes places from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. at Sugar Bowl Mountain Resort in Norden. Members of Moms on the Mountains, or MOMS, will then begin their day with a yoga section before diving into a light breakfast. Participants have the choice of going on a longer hike or a shorter one. Massages and lunches will be served after everyone returns from the mountain. A silent auction, with items donated from community members and local businesses, will wrap up the day.

Those interested in attending could either register online by visiting the Nevada City School District website or at Sugar Bowl’s Mt. Judah Lodge the day of the event. Hikers will need to raise a minimum sponsorship of $75 to participate.

The event is not only open to parents in the Nevada City School District. Any women from the community over 18 are welcomed to participate, Daugherty said.

The fundraiser came to a stop three years ago when the number of volunteers declined.

“It takes a lot of volunteers to pull off something like this event, and we just didn’t really have the parent pool to organize and support such an event,” Daugherty said.

According to Daugherty, the comeback is made possible by two moms from the district, Cynthia Moya and Laura van den Berg, who recruited the parents back to support the fundraiser.

Daugherty said the average number of group members is 150-200 per year, which way exceeded expectations of Riley and Parker when they put together the fundraiser over two decades ago.

“The first year they did it, they thought oh, maybe 12 women would come hike, and there was 135 women the first year and it raised $6,300,” Daugherty said. “And it continued for 19 more years after that.”

Over the years the MOMS have raised and donated more than $195,000 to Nevada City School District, including one record-breaking year when MOMS raised $35,000. The money has been used to pay for art, drama, computer, bicycle recycle and music programs at Deer Creek Elementary School and Seven Hills Intermediate School.

The MOMS had supported new tools for a bicycle program, a clay program, robotics for STEAM classes, and numerous art grants and art programs at her school, Daugherty said.

Even though it’s not confirmed, Daugherty said group members are considering using the money from the fundraiser this year to fund a Spanish program at the Nevada City School District.

“It was really sad to see it goes, but I do understand people’s plates are full,” Daugherty said. “But to have it come back is fantastic for our district.”

To contact Staff Writer Teresa Yinmeng Liu, please email, or call 530-477-4236.

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