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Community Profile: Cameron Park offers something for everyone

By Tinka Davi

A sign on Cameron Park Drive off Highway 50 greets visitors to the community.
A sign on Cameron Park Drive off Highway 50 greets visitors to the community. Ed Andersen

Take the Cameron Park exit off Highway 50 from Placerville and you can’t miss the sign. It’s the one with the large letters across a stone wall that says, “Cameron Park - A Special Place to Live.”

“It’s really true,” said Trent Andra of Lyon Real Estate. But, he said, “You don’t get it until you live there.”

“We have incredible schools and a hometown feel although we’re not necessarily a small town,” said the Realtor, who has lived in the community since 2004.

He also praised the Cameron Park Community Services District and its many programs, the swimming pool and Cameron Park Lake.

“It’s a great family place.”

There are a range of home communities from Cameron Estates with acreage and horse properties to Airpark Estates, which has homes with garages large enough for both cars and small aircraft.

Pilots can land on the runway and taxi to their homes. Street signs are low enough for airplanes to turn the corners, Andra said.

“We call them (the pilots) the weekend warriors. Lots of people are going in and out of there.”

Cameron Park has a great mix of neighborhoods and a mix of different lifestyles, he said. Where people chose to live depends on their price range.

For entry-level buyers, there are condominiums priced at $150,000 and single-family homes from $300,000 to $325,000.

The average price of homes is $425,000.

The number of homes on the market this year is 54; last year there were 82.

“Every fall prices go down and in the spring prices pick up,”Andra said. “But with the lower inventory, prices go up.”

Those “incredible schools,” he said, are within two elementary school districts, Buckeye and Rescue.

Upper-level students attend Ponderosa High School, “a great school with an FFA (Future Farmers of America) program,” he said. “A majority of students go on to college.”

Most commuters head for jobs in El Dorado Hills, Folsom and Rancho Cordova.

Cameron Park residents can choose from several places to shop including the Safeway center, the Bel Air Shopping Center and Burke Junction Shopping Center. The latter has a Farmers Market every Wednesday morning.

Buses headed for South Lake Tahoe stop in Cameron Park at the center where Safeway is located. That’s because there are many restaurants in that area, Andra said.

Cameron Park is conveniently located for those who like the outdoors. They enjoy Cameron Park Lake, Folsom Lake, Lake Tahoe and the Highway 50 corridor where there are hiking trails.

Apple Hill and its many bake shops, orchards and wineries are close by.

For in-town recreation and activities, Cameron Park Community Services District has something for everyone, said Tina Helm, CSD recreation supervisor.

“We offer programs for youth up to mature adults. There are lots of special events and activities available. Check our website at www.cameronpark.org.”

Upcoming are the Halloween Carnival and Pumpkin Patch Oct. 22, an Old-Fashioned Christmas Craft Faire, Nov. 19, Cameron Park Santa Run, Dec. 3, the Cameron Park Explorer Post 89 Fire Department Pancake Breakfast, Dec. 3, the Santa Parade with firetrucks driving through neighborhoods from Dec. 9-11 and the Sacramento Jazz Orchestra’s Holiday Concert, Dec. 14.

The Andra family moved to Cameron Park because that’s where his wife, Heidi, grew up. They have four youngsters, Simon, 13, Ellie, 11, William, 9 and Owen, 5.

“I really do like the sense of community,” Andra said. “It’s nice to go out walking and then hours later realize I talked to a bunch of neighbors. People are like family here.”

“It’s a great community.”

Tinka Davi is a freelance writer and editor based in Folsom.

FAST FACTS

Where: 30 miles east of Sacramento

Size: approximately 11 square miles

Population: 18,402

County: El Dorado

Government: Unincorporated

A look back

Larry Cameron, who some call a visionary, purchased 5,000 foothill acres that is now Cameron Park in the 1950s for ranching purposes. With the help of others, he gradually divided the land into lots of varying sizes.

The community reflects a wide scope of interests, with ranch-sized properties, medium and high-density residential, shopping areas, championship golf and country club, recreational lake and the Airpark Estates.

Glimpses of the past can be found in the still visible grinding rocks and burial mounds of the Niesnan branch of the Maidu Indians. And some structures of the Skinner Winery, which dates back to 1865, can be seen at the corner of Green Valley Road and Cameron Park Drive.

- Shingle Springs/Cameron Park Chamber of Commerce

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