The members of the Minden Town Board selected this site, on the Minden-Gardnerville boundary and adjacent to the telephone company offices, as a particularly appropriate location for what they have named "Sunset Park".
In the early 1900's, United Farmers Telephone and Telegraph provided telephone locally and to an expanding rural region. In the 1940s, United Farmers became California Interstate Telephone Company, which later became Continental Telephone and Telegraph, serving the South Lake Tahoe portion of El Dorado Company, as well as Alpine and and Mono Counties, all in California, and the Stateline, Topaz and Carson Valley portions of Douglas County, Nevada. In certain areas, hand-crank telephones remained in use into the 1960s, and areas such as Fish Springs received their first-ever telephone service in the 1970s.
In the early 1960s, "Dial Day" arrived, allowing telephone customers of the phone company, by using the prefix "Sunset", to dial directly anywhere in the Carson Valley without going through a switchboard (attended by as many as eight operators at one time). As recently as the 1980s, many areas in our region, such as Mono and Alpine Counties, could be reached from the Carson Valley only with operator assistance.
When the phone company in the 1970s discontinued the use of prefixes and adopted an all-numbers calling method, the old prefix Sunset became 78, numbers which remain in use today for telephone access in the towns of Minden and Gardnerville.
Sunset Park was conceived, designed, engineered, financed, and constructed as a joint effort of Resource Concepts, Inc. (Bruce Scott and Brenda Stein, Project Engineers), Landscape Architect Sandra Wendel, Casinelli Landscaping and Construction, Michael and Angel Gilbert, The Minden Town Board, and the staff of the Town of Minden. Creation of Sunset Park at this location would not have been possible without the assistance and cooperation of Douglas County, the Town of Gardnerville, neighboring landowners, and Verizon (and its predecessors, Contel and GTE).
Minden Town Board Members - September 3, 2003
Raymond G. Wilson, Chairman
David C. Sheets, Vice Chairman
Ross J. Chichester
Bruce M. Jacobsen
Robert S. Hadfield