Locals Serve Public Lands
Saturday, September 29, 2012, an estimated 170,000 people, including many in California, participated in the 18th annual National Public Lands Day. Since 1994, non-profits from across the country, as well as eight federal agencies, and state, regional and local governments have participated in the annual day of caring for public lands, making it the nation's largest single-day volunteer event for public lands.
“We’re thrilled that so many people are getting excited about improving and maintaining public lands,” said Sara Husby-Good, Executive Director and Campaign Coordinator of Tuleyome a non-profit located in Woodland and Napa, CA. Tuleyome is working with the Sierra Club and others to permanently protect 321,000 acres of public lands in the Berryessa Snow Mountain region. Husby adds, “This is a beautiful place that is loved and utilized by so many people. We want these special lands to be protected for many future generations to enjoy.”
The purpose of National Public Lands Day is to educate America about the need for shared stewardship of these valued, irreplaceable lands; build partnerships between the public sector and the local community based upon mutual interests in the enhancement and restoration of America's public lands; and improve public lands for outdoor recreation, with volunteers assisting land managers in hands-on work.
This year volunteers in every state visited parks, lakes, beaches, wildlife preserves and forests to help protect these special and wild lands that belong to all Americans. They improved and rehabilitated the lands and facilities for public use; such as recreation, education, and exercise.
In northern California, a crowd gathered to improve the network of trails in the public lands of the Berryessa Snow Mountain region. They worked on clearing a section of trails that will stretch from Pope Creek to Putah Creek in Napa County. With abundant opportunities for outdoor recreation, including hiking, biking, fishing, horseback riding, boating and swimming the area is already a prime, if little known, recreation destination. Just a stone’s throw away from Sacramento and the Bay Area, the public lands in the Berryessa Snow Mountain region are some of the most dazzling and diverse in the country.
Last year, National Public Lands Day contributed an estimated $17 million in volunteer services to public lands, which included planting about 100,000 trees, shrubs and other native plants, as well as building and maintaining approximately 1,500 miles of trails. Volunteers also collected an estimated 23,000 pounds of invasive plants and removed an about 500 tons of trash from trails and other places.
Learn more about protecting the public lands in the Berryessa Snow Mountain Region.-- By Charlotte Orr, Tuleyome