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Volunteers pitch in for Earth Day cleanup

By: Laura Newell, Features Editor
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The California State Parks Foundation will host 24 environmental improvement projects at state parks across California as part of its 16th Annual Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup presented by Pacific Gas and Electric Company.

The Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup is from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., April 13, at Folsom Lake State Recreation Area. Approximately 75 volunteers are needed to complete park improvement projects.

Participants will clean-up the Campfire Center to get it ready for the upcoming season. They also will replace fencing, remove weeds, cleanup kiosks and more, said Gretchen Krueger, Media Relations for California State Parks Foundation’s Earth Day.

According to Terri Lopez, district interpretive specialist for the Gold Fields District, State Parks has partnered with PG&E and the California State Parks Foundation each year and has hosted an Earth Day event in the Folsom area.

“Earth Day provides an opportunity for the community to give back in a world-wide effort by taking the small steps in helping locally,” Lopez said. “It is important that we work together and ensure we continue to protect the planet and keep it healthy not only for us but for those that have yet to discover its remarkable wonders.”

Krueger said Earth Day clean-up volunteers are needed to help with different projects including trail and campground improvements, trash cleanup, bridge building, tree planting and wildlife habitat restoration. Volunteers are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to project sites on Earth Day. The donations will benefit the Placer County Food Bank.

“For 16 years, our Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup has brought communities together to beautify and preserve beaches, forests and historic sites at California state parks,” said Elizabeth Goldstein, president of California State Parks Foundation. “We could not do it without the support of our sponsors, partners and volunteers including PG&E, Southern California Gas Company, Edison International, Chevron, Oracle and Virgin America. State parks continue to need a helping hand and we’d like to thank our friends for their contributions in helping to keep our state parks magnificent.”

PG&E, which is sponsoring 11 public sites in Northern and Central California, is providing a $210,000 grant to the foundation and to participating parks for the supplies and materials required to complete Earth Day projects.

PG&E is providing extra support for state parks by participating in four additional cleanup days for PG&E employees and their families including, April 4 at Candlestick Point State Recreation Area, April 6 at Mt. Diablo State Park and Angel Island State Park and April 27 at Folsom Powerhouse State Historic Park.

“Helping to restore and preserve our state parks for the enjoyment of both current and future generations of Californians is a key part of PG&E’s environmental commitment,” said Ezra Garrett, PG&E vice president, community relations and chief sustainability officer. “We are proud to support state parks in the communities we serve where our employees and their families have dedicated over 25,000 volunteer hours during the twelve consecutive years that PG&E has been the statewide presenting sponsor of the Earth Day Restoration and Cleanup program.”

To volunteer, visit calparks.org/earthday or call 1-888-98-PARKS.