SLO Op is Expanding to Santa Maria!

Gee, that place is so cavernous. It looks like it could use some climbing walls, don't you think?

“The Pad” – Santa Maria, CA!

Our realtor, Will, and Yishai hanging out outside

Our realtor, Will, and Yishai hanging out outside

What: SLO Op Climbing is a 501c7 non-profit social club dedicated to maintenance of a gym in San Luis Obispo and to the greater interests of the local climbing community. On 9/4/14, our board voted unanimously to increase our community to include Santa Maria, CA and the surrounding areas by installing a second gym location, to be called “The Pad.”

Where:  “A” Street in South Santa Maria approaching Orcutt in an established business park. We are in discussions with the realtor currently about options for move in and with the city planning department about use in that location.

When: We project the gym will open in February should all use permits, engineering, paperwork, and investments come together.

Why: SLO Op has grown by leaps and bounds and we are proud of our service to the community. Many Northern Santa Barbara county residents are making the trek to the gym, and there is a large population that has not had the benefit of the kind of services and facilities that SLO Op maintains. By bringing “The Pad” to Santa Maria, we hope to give a new demographic (consisting of families and young professionals) the opportunity to pursue a healthy pastime and be a part of a cohesive community in an area with very few competing options.

Oh my gosh, TWO roll up doors.

Oh my gosh, TWO roll up doors.

How: “The Pad” will become a second wing of SLO Op Climbing – SLO Op’s board, crew, and staff will oversee the gym’s development while developing a local staff and volunteer corps that supports our programs and facility. The gym will initially be staffed during proposed hours of 10-10 pm, but we are looking into 24-7 access options as well. The concern is that the demographic geography of the area is a bit different and we will need to have higher security protocols that we are exploring. We would ideally provide services like workout room, kids’ programs, after school programs, camps, team building, yoga, and – yes – birthday parties at this new facility over time, building in stages as we did with SLO Op.

How will this affect SLO OP? It shouldn’t. Our staff is committed to helping it succeed on its own. Our loans and expenses will be secured through SLO Op’s current cash flow which is more than enough to ensure non-failure of both gyms should The Pad falter in the growth we project for it. We are doing a round of fundraising that is independent of SLO Op’s current assets and cashflow and intend to track the finances separately, making each gym independently viable.

How will this affect SLO Opers?  We think in only good ways: you will have a reciprocal membership with both gyms when you have a membership with one – road trip to the new location or stay close to home. New people to meet, new places to train and explore, and we’ll be doing hold trades and such to keep both gyms fresh and awesome.


It wouldn’t be SLO Op without a big ag field next door.

But SLO Op is pretty busy at times now, why not expand here?  Property in Santa Maria is about half what it is in SLO. We are confident that we can expand there with positive results, while we are not yet in a situation to expand the current gym. The net result of two profitable gyms is a financial reserve that allows us to expand to a cooler facility in a few years here in SLO. By working together, we can keep growing into sheer SLO OP AWESOME!

Great – how can I help?

We are funding this the same way we did last time – we feel it’s a wonderful way to build trust in the community and investment from our climbers and we think we can do it with your help.

The gym needs about $300,000 to get built and have operating expenses for three months prior to getting our membership numbers where they need to be. We are offering a few options to people ready to help us grow:

Donations up to $2000 = our sincerest gratitude

Donations of $2001-5000 = lifetime membership to SLO Op climbing gyms for your family (you, your significant other, any current or future kids)

Gee, that place is so cavernous. It looks like it could use some climbing walls, don't you think?

Gee, that place is so cavernous. It looks like it could use some climbing walls, don’t you think?

Loans of $5001-10,000 = lifetime membership + prime rate interest (3.25% currently) with the debt matured after 9 months, amortized over three years (paid off) of monthly payments made electronically. This basically means that if you need a buyout, we will honor it, though we would like you to expect a 3 year amortization. Plus, your name on a plaque in the new facility and much respect.

Loans of $10,001+ =  lifetime membership + prime rate interest + 3 % (6.25% at this time) under the same conditions above. Plus, your name on a plaque in the new facility and much respect.

Don’t have money? That’s okay – you can help by spreading the word and we are sure to need help physically building the gym when the time comes. Help us spread the love of SLO Op today! If you are interested, please let us know how much you would like to donate/invest and we will prepare the necessary documents.

  • We need funds no later than December 15th as our build out is scheduled to start in January.
  • We ask the loan amount be committed to by October 1st so we have enough time to know what we have to work with.
  • Repayment will start one month after we open the doors, opening is scheduled for the beginning of February.
  • Your loan will be paid back in monthly installments over 3 years.

Ready to contribute to the growth of our awesome club? Please head over to this link to submit your information. We’ll draw up paperwork and get it to you with instructions when we get the information!

Please email or call 805 720 1245 to discuss any questions or interest you have. :)

Our numbers:
Breakeven occurs at 459 members. Conservative numbers show us hitting that within five months of opening.  Part of the startup costs listed below include fixed monthly expenses for three months to cover our negative period. All of these numbers are subject to change (hence the contingency)

Itemized Startup Costs $130,740
Interior/lease hold improvements $5,000
Rent deposit $4,500
Insurance Premiums $10,000
Architectural Fees $2,000
Engineering Fees $5,000
City fees $6,000
LLC/corporation $0
Promotion for opening (including advertising) $1,000
Legal fees $550
Incidentals $2,000
Total $221,290
Start-up Assets
Cash Balance on Starting Date $0.00
2 months expenses $54,500.00
Total Expected Expenses: $275,790.00
Contingency Funds: (20% of Total Expected Expenses) $55,158.00
Total Capital Necessary: $330,948.00

Fixed monthly expenses:

Rent $9,000.00
Utilities $800.00
Gym Personnel $14,550.00
Non Profit Management $2,000.00
Holds $200.00
Replacement materials $200.00
Advertising $200.00
Fees $300.00
Repayment of Loan (36 months) $9,767.56
Total $27,250.00



New doorbell system!

The receiver on the left contains a raspberry pi with a wifi dongle and a laser detector pcb. The lasers on the right are being pulsed at 100Hz 10% duty cycle generated by a 555 timer.
The receiver on the left contains a raspberry pi with a wifi dongle and a laser detector pcb. The lasers on the right are being pulsed at 100Hz 10% duty cycle generated by a 555 timer.

The receiver on the left contains a raspberry pi with a wifi dongle and a laser detector pcb. The lasers on the right are being pulsed at 100Hz 10% duty cycle generated by a 555 timer. Don’t worry about the wires. We’ll pretty it up. :) 

SLO Op manages to pioneer the climbing gym industry again!  Our SLO Op Crew and Board member, Alex Klimaj, built us a new doorbell system for the gym.

Currently, because we have two doors, there is a members’ only door that lets people in using a barcode scan, and there is a visitors’ door, open during our visitor hours. We have a doorbell that rings in the gym so that crew members can climb and not be tied to the desk the whole time they work – but people leaving through the visitor door would send crew members running into an empty room for no reason.

So Alex designed a better way. Not only does it determine which direction the person is going in and make an alert sound (now through our public address system rather than the old doorbell method), but it can accurately measure how many people are in the gym at any time. You can now check SLO Op Bot’s Twitter feed at any time to see updated info every ten minutes or go to our homesite where updates will be posted on the right column area.

Huge gratitude to Alex’s idea, ability to pull it off, and just being an all around awesome contribution to the gym’s functionality.

New floors and a new wall!

SLO Op's improving day by day! We did a survey of membership and you voted 4:1 to remove the slackline and install a vertical wall for more wall variety. And so we are. We also are finally able to move on replacing the gym floors with new, industry … [Continue reading]

The Send: Bouldering Competition March 8

Our annual spring event - we have two comps in one: CCS for the collegiate climbers and Open Citizens for everyone else. The executive directors have ten years of diverse event production background, including ten years of climbing competitions, … [Continue reading]

Climbing legend Timy Fairfield comes to SLO-Op

Hello SLO-Opers We are very excited to announce that world champion, X-Games champion and climbing legend Timy Fairfield will be visiting our neck of the woods to help our great setters get even better. In addition Timy will be hosting a member … [Continue reading]

New Rates Starting March 1st!

Hey SLO-Op members! We hope that 2014 is off to a great start for each of you. We're prepping for some exciting events, programs, and improvements this year, and we want you all to be the first to know (more on this in a minute). In order to bring … [Continue reading]

Clinics on the Fourth Thursday of the Month!

We will offer a beginner climbing clinic on the fourth Thursday of every month at 7 pm.  Open to anyone with little-to-no climbing experience, bouldering V0/V1. It is free to participate with a membership or day pass, sessions will last 1.5-2 … [Continue reading]

Holiday Hours!

Cal Poly is out for Winter Break and our schedule has changed for the next three weeks! This week (12/16-12-19) will be open: Mon-Thurs 6-10 pm - Saturday's 2-4 is staffed. Next week (12/23-26) will be open: Mon-Tues 6-9 pm with Saturday's 2-4 … [Continue reading]

SLO OP Children’s Program is Now OPEN for Registration!

Registration is OPEN! Space is limited, so apply early. To register for our upcoming children’s program, please have your child answer the questions on this form.  When your application has been processed, you will be notified via email, at which … [Continue reading]

Extended Holiday Hours for the Gym

This year, we will be open on 11/27-29 from 6-9 pm for visitors and non-members wishing to use the gym during the holiday break.  That's right! You can worky off your turkey! We will also be offering hours during winter break on 12/23-24 and … [Continue reading]