|The main article in the last News Update of 2010 (December 30) was
entitled, "Our Year In Review." It focused on our past year — where we've
been. This article will focus on where we're at today, and on where we
expect to be in the months ahead.
The operational side of Naturist Legacy Inc. has proven to be a very
complex process. It's not possible to explain that complexity using just
a few words, and so this article will be longer than usual. We concluded
that we'd rather be criticized for the length of our article than for failing
to keep our members fully informed.
Our Structure And Main Purpose
Naturist Legacy is not a club. It is, in fact, a membership-based non-profit
(non-share) corporation. No one "owns" Naturist Legacy Inc. It is governed
by a board
of directors (elected by its membership), who are in turn governed
by the corporation's by-laws (approved by its membership). A copy of those
by-laws are available here -- http://www.naturistlegacy.org/docs/NLI_Bylaws.pdf*
-- and in the Members Area of Naturist Legacy's Web site (log in at http://www.naturistlegacy.org/login.html).
The first and primary duty of Naturist Legacy Inc. according to its
by-laws is to acquire land and then to hold that land in trust for naturist
use — forever. Those by-laws were purposely written in such a way that
once the corporation acquires land, it's almost impossible for it to resell
that land. Under law, Naturist Legacy Inc. is regarded as a legal "person,"
and thus has the legal right to transact business like a natural person.
However, unlike the person who founded what became Crocus
Grove, or the persons who later turned Crocus Grove into a textile
campground, a corporation cannot unexpectedly die, and it cannot inexplicably
change its mind.
So then, barring an utter catastrophe, the land
now owned by Naturist Legacy Inc. will forever be a location where
members can be socially nude anywhere on the property away from public
view. The corporation cannot change its mind and kick the nudists out.
The board of directors cannot change their minds and kick the nudists out.
Whatever is built for nudists on this land will remain available for nudists
on this land. Period. For the very first time in the 42-year history of
organized social nudism in Manitoba, our community has achieved true permanency
through Naturist Legacy!
Naturist Legacy's primary goal is to forever eliminate the risk of
ever losing our nudist location again. While forever is a very grand goal,
we think that our current business model meets that objective as far as
any one method is capable. To achieve this kind of security, we must own
land outright. Having a mortgage would be a liability and pose a threat
to our permanency. Prepaid membership fees allowed us to raise the money
necessary to achieve the goal of land ownership with no liabilities attached.
So long as the corporation pays the property taxes, insurance and required
utilities, this land will always be ours.
Prepaid membership fees will also fund the further development of our
land. In order to meet the principle of having no debts to outside lenders,
any improvements to the land will only be made based on actual cash of
our own in the bank. No money, no development. It's that simple.
Each year, prepaid membership fees will be credited back to the member
until their account is fully depleted. The yearly billings of new and existing
members who are not able or willing to pay forward will fund ongoing operational
expenses. Many members have paid their estimated membership fees up to
five years forward. Some have paid over twenty years forward. The more
that members pay forward, the faster and better we can develop Naturist
Legacy Park. Again, it's that simple!
We all need to be reminded that it took the founders and early members
of Crocus Grove decades to develop the old site. They started by just gathering
in the bush with no water, power, sewer, clubhouse or pool. As money became
available, they built. It was a method that worked, and we will be employing
that same method. Granted, we have found a way to speed things up somewhat
with our pay forwards so that we will have utilities, bathrooms and a pool
in year one. The rest, however, is up to the generosity of the membership,
both in terms of their financial contributions and in terms of their desire
to come out, roll up their sleeves and help build the park from the ground
A Campground Or A Naturist Park?
Naturist Legacy Park will not be a commercial campground. We want to
be clear about that. We are not building a campground. We aren't in the
campground business. We won't be advertising or selling camping spaces
to anyone. Our non-profit corporation is in the social nudism / naturism
"business," and as such we have a much broader vision.
Today's nudist wants more than a campground, and so we're going to be
more than a campground — much more! We are building a naturist park,
not a campground. A naturist park is an activity destination. That means
there will be many more things to do than just camp. There will be nude
swimming and sunning, nude sports, lots of trails for nude hiking and biking,
nude gardening (perhaps), and more.
We need to move in this direction because it opens up a far greater
market for us. Successful and growing naturist parks are thriving because
their patrons don't need to own an RV to enjoy the full experience. Day-trippers,
as they were known in the old place, provide maximum income with little
expense. You can pack in day-trippers by the ton without being limited
by the number of campsites you have. Day-trippers are the majority of the
nudist population in Manitoba today. Hundreds of nudists can be seen on
Patricia Beach alone on a busy weekend. They're not towing RVs, nor do
they care to have that expense. We need to capture a much larger slice
of that customer base and make it our own.
As Lake Winnipeg gets more polluted by the day, and as water levels
rise due to Manitoba Hydro's use of the lake as a reservoir, the beaches
may become uninhabitable (if they exist at all) within the next ten years
or less. Add to this the less than friendly actions of the authorities
who oversee these beaches, and the question becomes: Where else can the
nudists go? Guess what, folks! We're it! We need to be ready to welcome
any and all nudists willing to live by our rules.
Fully serviced campgrounds are expensive to build and operate. Very
expensive! Much of this expense has to do with the fact that campgrounds
are now extensively regulated in Manitoba. The water safety issue is just
one example of such regulations. It was one of the main reasons cited by
the owners of our old home for kicking us out to make way for clothed campers
who would supposedly provide the increased income necessary to pay for
a provincially-mandated drinking water chlorination system. That system
alone will cost tens of thousands of dollars to install and maintain. We
would face similar costs were we to provide underground piped water to
campsites. The cost of electrification would be almost as expensive. Underground
wiring and pedestals at every site providing 30 amp power would also cost
several tens of thousands of dollars.
So once again: Naturist Legacy Park will not be a campground.
So where does all this leave members who own trailers, and who want
to locate them at Naturist Legacy Park? The short answer is that we
do intend to welcome them. These trailer owners will, however, need
to "rough it." We expect to have about 20 allotments available in early
2011 where members can park trailers if they wish. (An allotment is our
term for a small area of land assigned to a member and reserved for their
use alone. Availability will not be restricted to trailer owners alone.)
Members will be able to run their own heavy extension cords to bring 15
amp power to trailers from a central distribution point. They'll be able
to refill their onboard water tanks using a community water hose. They
will also have access to a large sewage holding tank where "honey wagons"
can be dumped.
It's very important to point out here that Naturist Legacy's low rate
structure will clearly reflect the reduced level of services that we will
be providing to trailer owners.
What Will Be Available At The Park In 2011?
In 2011, we expect to have all our basic utilities installed — a
new hydro line, a new water well, a new phone line and a new sewage holding
tank. We expect to build a new standalone washroom building containing
sinks, flush toilets and hot showers both inside and outside. We expect
to install a new above-ground pool and build a large sun deck around it.
And we expect to have the 20 allotments discussed above ready to occupy.
We also expect to have acres and acres of mowed lawns to wander and enjoy.
The construction and development of anything more than this will depend
upon the further generosity of the membership. Development will always
be governed by real cash in the bank, and not by pledges or promises or
hope. Timing will be critical in all this. If someone waits to pay membership
fees forward until the park opens this coming May (2011), it will likely
be too late to spend that money this year. We have only a few short months
between now and then to do building design, seek quotes and invite tenders,
obtain permits, etc. Once warmer weather actually does arrive, our focus
will be fully on the physical land development and no longer on planning
We'll reiterate once again that we're only going to build on the basis
of money in the bank. We build only what we can afford, and nothing more.
We are tasked with making the most out of every dollar we receive. Every
dollar will help to move this venture forward. No amount is too small and
no amount is too big when it comes to getting something of this size off
The RM Of Brokenhead
When the founders of Crocus Grove began their construction and development,
rural land was still essentially the "wild west" in terms of zoning by-laws
and building codes. Mostly they just didn't exist. In those days, people
pretty much built whatever they wanted, wherever they wanted, however they
wanted. Times have changed since then. Dramatically so, in fact. Land and
development is now very heavily regulated. Our challenge is to find ways
to live within those regulations.
Our extensive land search taught us that our single best chance for
rebuilding and being successful was in staying in the RM
of Brokenhead. We are a "known commodity" to them. Discussions held
last summer with officials in a neighbouring RM offered us a clear demonstration
of how difficult it would have been to start over elsewhere. Add to this
the fact that we found a near
perfect piece of land in the RM of Brokenhead in terms of tree cover,
soil drainage, elevation, proximity to a good paved highway, still within
an hour of the city, and close enough to the old camp for members who were
"trapped" there to move over to us or to visit conveniently. Buying this
particular property in this particular RM truly was the right thing to
We have been in communication with the RM of Brokenhead since before
we purchased our property. We continue to communicate with them. They are
aware of what we are planning to accomplish. We have disclosed details
to them both verbally and in a written prospectus. It's important to note
that we are not facing any by-law or zoning issues in the RM of Brokenhead
that we would not have faced in any other RM located within a reasonable
driving distance from Winnipeg.
The initial advice received by us from the RM was that we should begin
our development like the founders of Crocus Grove began theirs — small,
slow and quiet. We have taken that advice to heart and continue to work
at finding ways to "fit" within existing zoning and regulatory frameworks
in such a way that our development can proceed at a reasonable pace, and
at a reasonable price. This requires strategic thinking and diplomatic
consultations — none of which are quick or easy.
Our 80 acres of land is
zoned "A-80 Rural and Agricultural." This zoning may influence how
we develop our land, but it will not be something that halts basic development.
We may eventually apply for Conditional
Use permits for certain things, and at some point we may even pursue
a full re-zoning if it would be in our best interest to do so (the old
camp was rezoned "Seasonal Resort" when it was sold to the current owners).
Rezoning is a long and costly process, however, and so by necessity it
would need to wait until we are better established and in a position to
afford such an expense.
We have taken great care in this article to explain what we expect
our starting over to look like. If you haven't done so already, we invite
you to read the history of Crocus Grove posted on Naturist Legacy's Web
site (see http://www.naturistlegacy.org/doc_history_cgsc.pdf*). We believe
that our progress will be swifter than Crocus Grove's was. Nevertheless,
we don't want anyone to be under any illusions concerning what life will
be like at Naturist Legacy Park during our first few years. Our park will
be beautiful, and it will be nudist — of that everyone can be certain
— but it will initially lack many of the comforts and conveniences that
so many of us have taken for granted all these years. That will be the
reality of things for a while.
We are very excited about what the future holds for Naturist Legacy
Park. We hope that you are, too. We own a fantastic piece of land perfectly
suited for our life as nudists. We're confident that we'll make a very
good start in developing that land in 2011!
While we will continue to enthusiastically encourage nudists to support
Naturist Legacy with donations and membership fees paid forward, we will
not be engaging in any "hard sell" tactics. We believe that nudists who
grasp what Naturist Legacy is trying to achieve and who have seen our steady
progress to date will not need to be sold on anything.
We will continue to be very clear about the hard work that lies before
us. We will also continue to be very clear in stating that our growth and
success will depend entirely upon the support we receive from the nudist
community. In the end, each and every one of us will get out of this rebuilding
effort only what we put into it. There is no "white knight" who will come
to our rescue. We must do this ourselves, and do it we will!
Naturist Legacy is a private membership-based non-profit corporation
created to own and manage land held in trust for naturist use — forever!
We have our land. No debts. No mortgage. Ours forever. Naturist forever.
We are moving forward. We hope that you will join us, and that you will
generously support us.
Honour the past. Support the present. Build the future.
This newsletter is the non-members edition. Last names, addresses, phone
numbers, locations, etc. have been omitted in order to preserve the confidentiality
of active members.