E-News March 2015

From the President

Image: Trinidad State Beach ©Vincent James

Spring Forward

We are about to spring forward on the clocks to daylight savings time. That is always a sweet thing for those of us who care about getting outside around our work day, even for just a little bit of daylight.

In the meantime, CSPF is swinging into planning for Earth Day in April and we are deep into the new legislative season, gearing up for Park Advocacy Day in May. It is a busy time for us. Both of these events are key opportunities for all of you to join us in expressing our commitment to the glories of our state parks system. We are hopeful and excited that we are finally engaged again in pushing the trend away from crisis and toward excellence.

The challenge is that there is still enormous urgency around our collective cause of improving our state parks. The needs are still great. So despite the fact that we are beginning to see a modest turn around in funding for state parks, there is imperative to stay focused on the big picture. Exciting new parks and facilities are coming on line in the next fiscal year. It is a victory in our current way of thinking that the governor’s budget included their maintenance needs. However, these maintenance and operational needs are not being funded with basic tax dollars from the General Fund. These new parks and facilities must pay for themselves through revenues they generate. This is clearly okay but far from an ideal arrangement. No park manager should have to decide whether to have a reading program from neighborhood kids based on whether there is a concert to pay for it!

Speaking of new and different, I will be attending an event this weekend put on by a group of artists called Clockshop. Their latest projects are at Rio de Los Angeles State Park. We helped fund this effort in a modest way. I am so excited to see their work. It is such a pleasure to see Rio being used as a constantly changing and invigorated place for everyone who comes to see it. This is the kind of innovative partnership between DPR and a nonprofit partner that we have hoped for. New eyes will help keep this state park a vibrant place for all its users, new and old. Congratulations to everyone who worked on this project!

I am headed to San Diego in a couple of weeks to testify at the San Diego Water Board hearing on our ongoing park protection fight against the toll road that continues to threaten San Onofre State Beach. Thank you to all of you who sent letters to the San Diego Water Board for this hearing! I am deeply honored to carry your words and thoughts into that hearing with me. We will let you know what happens that day.

In the meantime, don’t forget to change your clocks and put on your best hiking footwear and get outside to enjoy our wonderful state parks. Thank you for what you do to make our collective work possible. Here’s to an excellent state parks system in our not too distant future!

Elizabeth Goldstein, President

Earth Day Volunteer Registration Now Open

Calling all volunteers! Registration is now open for our 2015 Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup presented by PG&E on Saturday, April 18.

Come out to one of 27 state parks participating in this year’s event to help us paint fences, build picnic tables, clear trails, restore habitats or clean campsites. Volunteers are needed from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. to help complete long-overdue park improvement projects that are funded by CSPF grants made possible by our event sponsors Pacific Gas and Electric Company, Chevron, Oracle and Edison International.

Since it began in 1998, our Earth Day program has recruited 80,976 participants who have contributed 334,301 volunteer hours worth over $6.39 million in park maintenance and improvement. Help us continue these positive impacts this year!

Find the complete list of projects and register to volunteer today.

Share Your Great State Park Photos

Image: ©Carolyne Cathey

There’s a new fun and easy way to show your support of state parks: Participate in CSPF’s “California’s State Parks Are Great Places for You & Me Photo Challenge” on our Facebook page!

During the Photo Challenge from March 5 to March 31, we are asking state park supporters to share photos that help tell the story of why “California’s State Parks are Great Places for You & Me.” With your help, we will collect hundreds of photos that will be featured as part of our state park expo taking place in front of the state capitol during Park Advocacy Day on May 5.

As a participant, you will also be eligible to win one of our weekly, randomly-selected prize packages. At the end of the Photo Challenge Contest, we will also award prizes to participants with photos that have the top 3 highest number of votes.

Participating in the Photo Challenge Contest is easy — just upload your photos to the Photo Challenge contest on Facebook, and spread the word to your friends.

We look forward to seeing your photos!

Upcoming Gala and Raffle

You could win a 2015 Toyota Camry Hybrid!

Golden Poppy Awards Gala presented by PG&E

Join us for an elegant evening of fun and merry-making to benefit California’s state parks on Saturday, June 6, 2015 at the 9th Golden Poppy Awards Gala at the historic Treasure Island Administration Building. The event will include a reception and dinner, live auction, raffle, and live music. We anticipate attendance of 400 donors, friends, and civic leaders for the Gala, CSPF’s largest bi-annual fundraiser.

During the event, CSPF will recognize Caroline Beteta, ‎President and CEO of the California Travel and Tourism Commission, for her extraordinary leadership in ensuring that state parks continue to provide recreation, adventure, and inspiration to all Californians and visitors from all over the world.

Please join us in supporting this event and the raffle detailed below. Gala tickets will be available for $350. If you have any questions, please contact Morgan Stewart at morgan@calparks.org.

Win a 2015 Toyota Camry Hybrid!

Purchase your chance to win a 2015 Toyota Camry Hybrid and a line-up of other fabulous prizes – all to benefit California’s magnificent state parks. You won’t want to miss out on this fun and exciting drawing, where there’s truly something for everyone!

Grand Prize: 2015 Toyota Camry Hybrid (approximate value: $32,000) or $12,000 cash

  • Drawing takes place on Saturday, June 6 at CSPF’s 9th Golden Poppy Awards Gala
  • $100 per ticket
  • Buy 5 tickets and get a sixth ticket free
  • Only 3,000 tickets will be sold
  • Need not be present to win

Raffle tickets will go on sale in mid-March. Check back for more information soon.

New Round of Grants Announced

Image: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park ©Charlotte Gibb

We are pleased to award a new round of Park Enrichment grants totaling $51,800 to 10 organizations that are working to support state parks in California. These grants are given to projects or programs that protect, enhance and preserve California’s state parks and are awarded three times a year through a competitive process. Projects must support CSPF’s Park Excellence Project vision elements: Celebrate Our Enduring Heritage, Welcome Visitors, Teach Californians, Safeguard Resources, and Connect Individuals, Organizations, and Partners.

Congratulations to the grant recipients!

Anderson Marsh Interpretive Association
$3,000 for interpretive equipment for nature walks, school field trips and senior tours
State Park: Anderson Marsh State Historic Park

Cuyamaca Rancho State Park Interpretive Association
$4,950 for park improvements and fence restoration
State Park: Cuyamaca Rancho State Park

Gold Discovery Park Association
$4,000 for an environmental living educational program
State Park: Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park

John Marsh Historic Trust
$2,720 to support organizational capacity building
State Park: Marsh Creek State Park, Mount Diablo State Park

Los Angeles Audubon Society
$8,000 for the Baldwin Hills Environmental Leadership program
State Park: Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area (Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook)

Mono Lake Committee
$4,000 for a volunteer program
State Park: Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve, Bodie State Historic Park

Napa County Regional Park and Open Space District
$3,755 for park equipment
State Park: Bothe-Napa Valley State Park, Bale Grist Mill State Historic Park

Outdoor Outreach
$10,000 to support recreational, educational and environmental stewardship youth outings
State Park: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Border Field State Park, Carlsbad State Beach, Mount San Jacinto State Park, San Clemente State Beach, San Elijo State Beach, San Onofre State Beach, Silver Strand State Beach, Torrey Pines State Beach and Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve

Portola and Castle Rock Foundation
$2,550 for graffiti removal
State Park: Castle Rock State Park

Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods
$8,825 for the Exploring Nature Through Science educational science program
State Park: Sonoma Coast State Park, Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve, Austin Creek Redwoods State Recreation Area

Get a Financial Game Plan

Image: ©John Karachewski

In addition to making provisions for their loved ones, some of our most loyal supporters have included CSPF in their estate plans. By doing so, they are able to leave a legacy for our parks while avoiding estate and income taxes through a charitable planned gift. CSPF is sponsoring two free eight-week workshops in Orange County—“It’s Your Money” and “It’s Your Estate”—to help our members learn about which assets are best to donate to charity, how to use an asset to increase life income and more.

Reservations can made by contacting the venues directly. Both workshops will be offered again in the fall, so you can take part in one now and another later. If you have already included CSPF in your plans and have not previously notified us, please contact Ziba Marashi, Director of Major Individual Gifts, at ziba@calparks.org or 415-262-4433, so that we can be sure to honor your intentions.

Volunteer in State Parks

Celebrate spring by volunteering in one of your favorite state parks. Help a local Park Champions team restore the boardwalk at MacKerricher (Mendocino County), help with general maintenance at Picacho (Imperial County), build new split rail fences at Fort Ross (Sonoma County) or Portola Redwoods (San Mateo County), repair hiking trails at China Camp (Marin County) or Chino Hills (Orange/Riverside/San Bernardino counties), or restore habitat for the birds and the bees at Rio de Los Angeles (Los Angeles County), Palomar Mountain (San Diego County), or Candlestick Point (San Francisco County). Workdays at Picacho, MacKerricher, Palomar Mountain, Fort Ross, and China Camp include free camping.

On March 21 Park Champions will host a very special volunteer workday at Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park (San Mateo County). This workday will focus on habitat restoration projects to improve the plant and animal habitat surrounding the lighthouse, reinvigorating this stretch of the beautiful central San Mateo coast. Lunch will be provided, followed by a tour led by Program Manager Cecille Caterson describing the work done by CSPF to protect and restore this historic landmark.

Visit our website to see a map of upcoming projects at parks near you and our Flickr page for examples of Park Champions in action.

Photo of the Month

Image: Schooner Gulch State Beach ©Lance Kuehne

Congratulations to photo contestant Lance Kuehne for winning the Photo of the Month for February!

His moody blue image, “Shell,” was captured during the “blue hour” at Bowling Ball Beach inside Schooner Gulch State Beach.

You could be the next photo of the month winner! To compete in CSPF’s contest, simply complete your free registration on MyParkPhotos.com and be sure to check off “California State Parks Foundation” next to Join Partner Contests.

Thank you to our contest sponsor Lowepro!

Weekend Travel Tips from Weekend Sherpa

Image: Bean Hollow State Beach ©Pam & Richard Winegar

Have you Bean Yet?

Unassuming, beautiful, and a favorite once discovered, Bean Hollow State Beach is the Maggie Gyllenhaal of the San Mateo Coast. Located 3 miles south of Pescadero, this stretch of golden sand requires no hike-in, yet on most afternoons the place is wonderfully uncrowded. Spend the afternoon playing Frisbee, barbecuing, exploring the many tide pools, and playing fetch with Rover (Bean Hollow is one of the few dog-friendly beaches in the region). Our critics say: Two thumbs up!

Find out more at Weekend Sherpa.

California State Parks Foundation

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