Coconino County Parks and Recreation manages six county parks and two natural areas, with the most familiar park being Fort Tuthill County Park, home of the annual Coconino County Fair and the Pepsi Amphitheater. This past winter, the Board of Supervisors and the County Parks and Recreation Department approved Frontiere at Rogers Lake for special events and the site has already been used for several weddings and business retreats.
The Frontiere property is named for Georgia Frontiere, the previous owner of the property and the first female owner of a National Football League team, the Los Angeles (later the St. Louis) Rams. Several buildings were built on the 240-acre property, including a main house with stables, horse pens and corral, caretaker’s quarters and RV sites. The only building occupied was the caretaker’s quarters. Approximately 220 acres remain largely undeveloped. This includes forested uplands of ponderosa pine and a portion of the western edge of Rogers Lake.
After Georgia Frontiere’s death in 2008, the property was donated to Coconino County in 2011. In that time, the property has been used for weddings, business retreats, meetings, special events and an artist-in-residency program with Northern Arizona University.
The site offers spectacular views of the San Francisco Peaks, as well as an ideal spot to watch wildlife and gaze at the stars (thanks to the County’s Dark Skies planning). The area also has prehistoric sites and scatter areas dating back 5,000 years and there are old railroad beds and log structures from Flagstaff’s sheep herding and logging era. Earlier history of the site includes a homestead near present-day Frontiere at Rogers Lake, as outlined in Donna Ashworth’s book, “Biography of a Small Mountain.”
Strategic planning and goal setting retreats are important tools many businesses and organizations employ to develop cohesion and set priorities. As a new special event venue, Frontiere at Rogers Lake offers a natural outdoor setting with many comfortable features that are perfect for public and private sector excursions. The Main House offers several rooms where groups can have breakout sessions for brainstorming ideas or goal setting, while the great room is ideal for facilitators to utilize. A large kitchen and multiple bathrooms are on the same floor as the great room and breakout rooms.
The county encourages people who use the venue to be sustainable and firewise and to view, but not feed or touch, wildlife. Parks and Recreation also asks users to help prevent the spread of invasive weeds, keep trash and recycling in their proper containers and limit light and noise pollution.
As part of Rogers Lake County Natural Area, Frontiere at Rogers Lake is available for many types of activities. People can make a reservation from May 1 through Sept. 30 through the Parks and Recreation office. For more information, reservation rates and available dates, visit FrontiereAtRogersLake.com. FBN
By Cynthia Nemeth
Cynthia Nemeth is the Coconino County director of Parks and Recreation.