Thank You for a Great Earth Day

Earth Day

Earth Day volunteers hunt for debris at Sonoma Coast State Park in Jenner.

Thank you, CSPF members, supporters, and volunteers — you pulled off another great Earth Day event this past Saturday!

Over 2,000 volunteers rolled up their sleeves and tackled dozens of improvement projects at 27 state parks from Mendocino down to Los Angeles. They removed invasive plants and graffiti, installed picnic benches and displays, built food storage lockers, installed drip irrigation systems, painted work sheds and bathrooms, picked up trash along shorelines and lakes, planted native shrubs and bushes, and more.

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Volunteers plant and water native species at Candlestick Point.

See photos and details of each park here.

These thousands of contributed volunteer hours helped get parks ready for the busy summer season, which is especially important given the continued budget restrictions affecting the state parks system.

In addition to volunteering, hundreds of you made donations to our Earth Day Campaign. Thanks to you, we hit the $15,000 target and earned the matching grant from our friends at The Donner Foundation.

Thank you one and all for your generosity! You’re making great things happen for the parks we all love.

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Volunteers at Crystal Cove enjoyed a beautiful view while they worked.

Would you like more opportunities to volunteer in parks? Maybe you came to Earth Day and had a good time, or maybe you were sad to miss it and would like to try another time. Either way, check out our Park Champions program.  We have several volunteer events each month, including some special events next weekend in partnership with Take It Outside, California! 

 

 

Earth Day is made possible by our presenting sponsor Pacific Gas and Electric Company, associate sponsors SUBWAY Restaurants, Edison International and Oracle, and grant providers Microsoft, Southern California Gas Company, Goldman Sachs, The Nature Conservancy — and YOU, our members.

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A Day in the Life: Earth Day Volunteer

Our Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup Event is next Saturday, April 16. We need volunteers to join us to work on much-needed improvement projects at 27 state parks across California. Join us for a great day outdoors in a park working side by side with fellow community members to make a real difference this Earth Day.

If you are still debating whether or not to volunteer, here’s what your Earth Day might be like if you sign up (hint: it will be awesome).

8:30am – 9am: You arrive at the park (following directions from the website) and park for free (!) because we appreciate our volunteers. You follow signs to the check in table head over to register, sign a waiver and say hello.

While other volunteers get registered, you enjoy some graciously-donated coffee from Peet’s Coffee and breakfast treats from Fruit Guys, Nature’s Path, and Lundenberg.

9am – The event organizers kick off the event! They welcome all the volunteers, give a safety talk, and explain the projects for the day. If there is more than one project, you pick the one that sounds good to you and join that group. Grab some gloves and tools and get ready to work!

9:30am – 12:30pm – You get work done! You help your team with the projects, get to know people, enjoy being outside, and have a great time.

12:30 pm – You did it! Look around and take in the improvements you made. Then gather together with the team to enjoy some lunch from SUBWAY Restaurants, and maybe get some fun prizes like Chipotle.

 

So what do you say? Will you join us next Saturday in a park near you?

See a map of the parks, read project descriptions, and register to volunteer online. Registration will close early next week, so sign up today!

 

Volunteers Made Earth Day Count in California State Parks

Our 2015 Earth Day Restoration & Cleanup on Saturday, April 18 was a huge success! Awesome, happy, hardworking volunteers came out to 27 state parks throughout California to lend a helping hand, and their work made a big impact!

Here are just a few of the great volunteers:

Earth Day would not be possible without the generous donations and hardworking volunteers from presenting sponsor PG&E, as well as sponsors Chevron, Oracle and Edison. Thank you sponsors!

Special thanks also goes to our refreshment providers Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Togo’s, Larabar, Subway, and The Fruit Guys. Their generosity fed some very hungry volunteers.

A shout out also to our media partners who helped us get the word out about our event and find those awesome volunteers.

And finally, big props to the park staff who coordinated these projects and gave us all an opportunity to make a direct impact for Earth Day.

Happy Earth Day, indeed.

Happy Earth Day

We are feeling a little extra love for our state parks today … today being officially Earth Day.

We say officially because last Saturday, April 13, we had CSPF’s Annual Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup. We hold this event every year in which we coordinate projects in state parks across the state and bring out awesome sponsors and volunteers to work in their local park for the afternoon.

This year we had Earth Day events at 24 state parks. 2,580 volunteers came out to work in those parks, and they did an incredible job! The volunteers planted 116 native trees and 1,740 native plants. They also removed a lot of non-native plants: 402 bags, 902 cubic yards, 3,000 square feet, 975 gallons, 8 truckloads and 10 tarps full. Not to mention 408 bags of trash and 49 bags of recycling.

See them in action:

We are so grateful for our volunteers and sponsors. A big thank you to PG&E, Chevron, Oracle, SoCal Gas, Edison, Virgin America, Chipotle Mexican Grill, KIND Healthy Snacks, Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Starbucks Coffee and The Fruit Guys.

Happy Earth Day all!

CSPF’s Earth Day is this Saturday

Ashley Cookerly, Richard Cookerly

Just helping the earth over here

This Saturday, April 13, hundreds of Californians will get out of bed early, throw on an old pair of jeans, and head to their local state park to volunteer at our 16th annual Earth Day Restoration & Clean Up presented by PG&E. It’s one of our most fun events of the year, and we are looking forward to it!

We think there’s no better way to celebrate Earth Day than by getting out to a park you love and get your hands a little dirty planting seeds, pulling weeds, building fences, painting railings and fixing up campsites. Plus, it’s cool to know that there will be folks all across the state at 24 different parks working towards the same good cause.

Most of our 24 sites filled to capacity (because our volunteers are awesome!) but a few sites still have open space. Consider walking up to volunteer at one of these parks Saturday morning:

  • Auburn State Recreation Area
  • Benicia State Recreation Area
  • Doheny State Beach
  • Jack London State Historic Park
  • Mt. Tamalpais State Park
  • Picacho State Recreation Area
  • San Clemente State Beach
  • San Onofre State Beach
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These could be your helping hands

We are, of course, extremely grateful to our Earth Day sponsors whose generous contributions of grants, volunteers and in-kind donations make this event possible. PG&E, our presenting statewide sponsor, provided $210,000 to fund project sites across the state. Our other awesome sponsors include Chevron, Oracle, Southern California Gas Company, Edison International and Virgin America. Our in-kind sponsors providing fuel to our hungry volunteers are Chipotle Mexican Grill, KIND Healthy Snacks, Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Starbucks Coffee, Noah’s Bagels and The Fruit Guys. Yummy stuff!

So we’ll see you bright and early Saturday morning, earth lovers!

Volunteers Head to Malibu Creek

“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth.”
–Muhammad Ali

Malibu Creek State Park is a popular Santa Monica park that has been the set for many TV shows and movies, including M*A*S*H, Planet of the Apes, Love Me Tender, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and Pleasantville.  Although it looks great on the big screen, these days it needs a little extra TLC to maintain it in all its glory.

Malibu Creek State Park
Photo © Brent Durand

Thankfully, we have a throng of awesome volunteers heading to Malibu Creek this Saturday to fix it up. It’s all part of our Annual Earth Day Restoration & Cleanup event.  Normally our Earth Day takes place in April, but this year we had to reschedule due to heavy spring rains.  We are glad the big day has finally arrived!

Volunteers, Edison International employees, park rangers, CSPF staff and Malibu Creek Docents will all work together to restore the lawn by planting several hundred native grasses and plants, remove other non-native plants and conduct general cleanup of the Visitor Center area. This is a great opportunity to do this clean-up because in a few weeks there will be water in the creek. They will also be putting up a temporary fence to protect the plants from the deer while they are getting established.

We are very grateful to Edison International, whose grant has made this day possible. (Volunteer registration is full.)

CSPF Annual Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup 

Statewide, thousands of volunteers each year plant native trees and community gardens, restore trails and wildlife habitats, remove trash and debris from beaches and parklands and make overdue repairs to fences and boardwalks. Since its inception in 1998, CSPF’s Earth Day Restoration & Cleanup program has resulted in — 76,000 participants contributing more than 305,000 volunteer hours worth over $6 million in park maintenance and improvements.  Additionally, the program has awarded more than $1.35 million to state parks throughout California.

Our next Earth Day is scheduled for April 13.  Stayed tuned for opportunities to register as a volunteer at a state park near you! http://calparks.org/programs/earth-day/

Vandals?! Volunteers to the rescue!

The aftermath. Hard to look at. Photo credit: Christina Vargas

We were very sad when, only days after 160 volunteers spent their Earth Day working in Candlestick Point State Recreation Area with us, we heard that vandals had broken into the park’s community garden and destroyed it.  They ruined gardening tools and thousands of native plants, including some that had been growing for years and were supposed to be planted in the nearby Yosemite Slough in order to help restore the sensitive wetlands.The damage also reversed most of the work done by our Earth Day volunteers.

After the shock wore off (Why?! It’s so horrible!) we realized these vandals shouldn’t win, and we started mobilizing to do something.

Our partners at PG&E, Literacy for Environmental Justice, Virgin America and Oracle all stepped up and agreed to schedule a new volunteer workday to undo the damage that had been done. The workday is taking place tomorrow (Saturday, June 2) and it’s going to be awesome! Volunteers from these organizations will replant native plants, fix community garden boxes and work to remove the old fence around the garden.

Why remove the fence? Because PG&E has generously donated $15,000 of additional funding to build a new, more secure perimeter fence around the garden to help keep something like this from happening again. Read more about that here.

If you’d like to join these awesome volunteers tomorrow morning, we’d love to have you. Please register on our website.

If you’d like to help but can’t come to Candlestick, you can do something right now by donating to the cause. Donations to help fix the garden can be made on our website.  Also be sure to “like” PG&E’s Facebook page, because for every like, they will donate $1 to this project.

Take that, vandals!

Earth Day Volunteer Photo Gallery

Thank you to all the volunteers who came out to work in 19 state parks across the state on Saturday, April 14 for our Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup. Here are some highlights of the day!

Volunteers needed! Can you help?

We need more volunteers for our 15th annual Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup on Saturday, April 14. It’s a fun day spent outdoors in your local state park doing large-scale improvements and renovations like trail maintenance, repairs, campground restoration and more. What better way to spend Earth Day than outside helping your state parks?

Registration is still open for the following locations:

  • Bale Grist Mill State Historic Park (Napa County)
  • Dockweiler State Beach (Los Angeles County)
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline (Alameda County)
  • Millerton Lake State Recreation Area (Fresno County)
  • Montaña de Oro State Park (San Luis Obispo County)
  • Patrick’s Point State Park (Humboldt County)
  • Rio de Los Angeles State Park (Los Angeles County)
  • San Onofre State Beach (Orange County)
  • Sonoma Coast State Beach (Sonoma County)

To register as a volunteer, please visit our website. Pre-registration allows us to plan for tools, materials and refreshments. Groups of 10 may sign up under one name. Will we see you there?

   

Join us for a Special Screening of ‘The First 70’

You’ve heard us talk about them before, the young filmmakers of Heath Hen Films who heard about the park closures, grabbed their cameras and set out to film all 70 of the state parks before they close.  Their travels have been tightly packed into an amazing 28-minute documentary titled “The First 70.”

If you live in the Bay Area, please join us for a screening of the film at Sports Basement in the Presidio on Sunday, April 22 at 5 p.m. What better way to spend Earth Day?

Event details and tickets are available here: http://sportsbasement-thefirst70.eventbrite.com/.