The Santa Maria Recreation and Parks Department (California) has been awarded $589,000, which will be used for engaging and fun outdoor experiences for families and children in the city.
“As we see during the pandemic, how important it is to be outside and enjoy what we have here in California,” said Recreation Services Manager Dennis Smitherman.
As per a report, this grant is provided through California State Parks and will allow the community to have the opportunity to participate in outdoor activities, such as field trips, whale watching, and more.
“It’s really going to be able to allow us to provide access to the nature and outdoors and experiences that a lot of Santa Maria residents haven’t had the opportunity to experience,” said Smitherman.
The grant also aligns with Governor Gavin Newsom’s “Outdoors for All” initiative that expands outdoor access to every Californian by focusing investment on open spaces infrastructure and other outdoor programs.
“I think what’s really good about this grant is not only are we getting people back out in nature, but we’re going to be able to provide youth and teens with leadership opportunities,” said Smitherman.
Many of the activities organized by the Santa Maria Outdoor Recreation Experience program will be based out of Buena Vista Park in Santa Maria.
Three years of activities are in the process and are scheduled to kick off this summer.
“We have great adventure trips such as whale watching, horseback riding, as well as educational outreach here in Santa Maria,” said Dennis Smitherman.