An online petition to keep Bonnie Springs Ranch from being sold to a developer had collected over 32,000 signatures as of Wednesday afternoon.
The campaign on Care2 petitions aims to make the ranch a historical landmark to prevent it from being demolished, according to the petition’s creator, Peter Hall.
Developer Joel Laub and his attorney and partner J. Randall Jones are under contract to purchase the ranch and turn it into a luxury community that will include a 25-room motel, a restaurant and a 5,400-square-foot event barn, Clark County records show.
“The city tried to demolish the Huntridge theater years ago, and our community was able to preserve this historical building by signing a petition to make it a historical land mark,” Hall said in the petition’s description.
At about 3 p.m. Wednesday the petition had gained 32,057 signatures of its 35,000 goal. The original goal was 5,000 signatures.
“Like most petitions on the Care2 platform, Peter started his campaign with a modest signature goal,” Care2 Senior Director of Engagement Rebecca Gerber said, “but we’ve continued to raise that number as support has grown around his petition.”
According to the National Register of Historic Places, sites can be nominated for the register by owners, historical societies, preservation organizations and government agencies or by individuals and other groups. However, properties cannot be added to the register if the owner objects.
After the impending sale of Bonnie Springs was announced, hundreds of visitors flocked to the ranch which hosts a train, petting zoo, horseback riding, a motel and an 1800s-style mining town filled with artifacts from Nevada.
According to the ranch’s website, it was founded in 1843 as a stopover for wagons heading to California via the Old Spanish Trail. It opened to the public as a tourist attraction in 1958.
The ranch is owned by children of founder Bonnie Levinson, who died in 2016.