Consider a Year-end Donation to Friends of Lake Panorama

Statistics show a high percentage of charitable contributions are made in the last few weeks of the year. Perhaps it’s because of the holiday spirit, or a desire to get a final tax deduction, or both. Sometimes a donation to charity is made in someone’s honor, rather than giving that person a gift.

For 2014, a new option for charitable giving is the Friends of Lake Panorama. The 501(c)(3) charity is focused on improving recreational amenities at Lake Panorama. All contributions to the nonprofit are tax deductible, and all donors will receive a letter of thanks as their receipt.

LPA members will receive a mailing in November with information on this nonprofit charity, current priority projects and ways to donate. The mailing includes a cover letter from Kent Stephenson, who is the current president of the seven-member volunteer board of directors. There is a two-page flyer that outlines the “who, what, when, where, why and how” of the organization, and a donation guide.

Donations are encouraged for one of two current priority projects. One is a new playground at Sunset Beach. The other will renovate two tennis courts at Lake Panorama National and add a basketball court. Each of the projects is estimated to cost between $100,000 and $120,000.

Donations also can be made to six separate funds or a combination of funds. There is a general fund, plus funds for Boulder Beach, Shady Beach, Sunset Beach, Panorama West, and Lake Panorama National. Money donated to any of these will be used at the discretion of the Friends board, or for smaller, targeted projects approved by the Friends board.

For donations by check, the mailing includes a form that can be completed and returned with a check. Donations also can be accepted electronically.

Donations of securities (stocks, mutual funds, etc.) are welcome, and will be sold once transferred, with the proceeds deposited into the Friends bank account. A securities account has been established with GCSB Investment Center in Panora.

Kristen Crouthamel, GCSB Investment Center financial advisor, says donating securities directly to Friends, rather than selling something that has appreciated in value, and then contributing the proceeds to the charity, offers several advantages.

“If the stock is higher in value than the purchase price, the donor would need to pay capital gains tax at the time of sale, and could only deduct the amount of the value after taxes,” she says. “But if the shares are transferred directly to a charity, there are no capital gains taxes and the donor can deduct the full amount as a charitable donation.”

Crouthamel says Friends of Lake Panorama also will benefit in this scenario, because it will not have to pay any capital gains tax and will receive the full value of the donation. She encourages donors to speak with their tax advisors about their specific situation and the treatment of donated appreciated stock.

Donors of $500 or more will be recognized on the Friends website, ads in the Lake Panorama Times, an annual printed report and future publicity. Where significant projects warrant, such as the Sunset Beach playground and the LPN sports courts, a sign recognizing donors will be erected near the completed project.

Anyone with questions regarding the Friends of Lake Panorama can contact Susan Thompson at 641-755-4382 or

For more information about donating securities, contact Kristen Crouthamel at 641-755-2799 or (Securities offered through Broker Dealer Financial Services Corp., Member FINRA & SIPC. Advisory services offered through Investment Advisors Corp., an SEC registered investment adviser.)