Three great events: Castro Adobe Open House, PopUp State Park, Heritage Talk  

Experience the Castro Adobe, the newest California State Historic Park, three ways in June!

First, visit the Castro Adobe on Saturday, June 11, for "Castro Adobe in the 20th Century," a free open house event from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The adobe’s story began in Mexican California, but it didn’t end when the last Castro left. The families who called the Castro Adobe home in the 1900s strengthened the structure, beautified the grounds and ultimately put this property on track to come together as a State Park in the Pajaro Valley. Carpooling is encouraged because parking is limited. The Castro Adobe is at 184 Old Adobe Road in Watsonville

For those who can't make the open house — or want to learn more about the Castro Adobe — the Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History will host a Pop-Up State Park as part of the 3rd Friday Festival. 3rd Fridays connect diverse community groups, artists and visitors. The June theme is "Changemakers."  Transport yourself to Watsonville's Castro Adobe: participate in a scavenger hunt, then play Californio games, make a tortilla ranchero style and learn to rope. The event will be 6-9 p.m. Friday, June 17, at the MAH, 705 Front St. in Santa Cruz.  Tickets are $3-$5.

Also, Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks will host a Vaquero Heritage Tack Talk led by noted historians Griff Durham and Bruce Haener, 1-4 p.m., Saturday, June 25. The talk begins at 1:30 p.m., and the fundraiser event also includes a tour of the park and refreshments. Cost is $25-$100 (attendees choose the amount of their donation). RSVP by calling 831-429-1840 or email

Join us for the annual Gerbera Festival at Kitayama Brothers Farms.  
Monterey Bay Greenhouse Growers Open House Tour will present the 7th annual Kitayama Brothers Farms Gerbera Festival, a benefit for Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 18.  

Tour the greenhouses, take a flower-arranging class, sample wine from Storrs Winery & Vineyards and take part in the tamale-tasting competition. There also will be a farmers market featuring locally grown produce and flowers, potted Gerbera plants and dozens of cut flowers for sale, and children's activities. 

The event is free. Proceeds from all sales benefit Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks. Kitayama Brothers Farms is at 481 San Andreas Road, Watsonville (next to Sunset State Beach).
Happy crowd turns out for Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park mural dedication
Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, elected officials and community members celebrated the new mural at Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park with a dedication ceremony Wednesday, June 8. 

See photos from the dedication ceremony and the mural installation progress on Facebook. 

The Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park Community Mural was funded through generous grants from Arts Council Santa Cruz County and City of Santa Cruz Economic Development City Arts, as well as support from Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks in honor of the Adobe Coalition. Additional assistance came from California State Parks, Rinaldi Tile and Marble, Diamond D Concrete, Suns Up Solar and local artist Kathleen Crocetti.

Volunteers are needed to help apply sealant to the mural, starting at 9 a.m. Sunday, June 19. Email Amanda Segers to lend a hand.
Lighting up the night at Pigeon Point.
Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park will host three special evening events this summer, beginning Sunday, June 12. One summer evening per month the Fog Signal Building will be opened and the First Order Fresnel lens will be lit for the "Light Up the Night" event. 

As dusk falls, the 24 beams of the light will provide a dramatic glimpse of how the lighthouse guided ships passing by the rocky coastline. Bring a flashlight and join in this unique experience. The events will be 8-9 p.m. Future events will be Sunday, July 3, and Sunday, Aug. 14. 

Pigeon Point is located 30 miles north of Santa Cruz and 20 miles south of Half Moon Bay on Highway 1 near Pescadero. Call the park at 650-879-2120 for more.
Celebrate dads at Big Basin Redwoods State Park. 
Big Basin Redwoods State Park will host its annual Father's Day celebration, "The Men of Big Basin," 1 p.m., Sunday, June 19. The event will include living history reenactments and a hike. The event is free; parking is $10 and supports the park. Big Basin is on Highway 236 approximately 10 miles outside of Boulder Creek.
Feed the Force 2016: Volunteers and donations needed. 
In appreciation of the great effort and dedication of those who work long hours to help keep our local state parks and beaches safe and enjoyable during the Fourth of July weekend, Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks will host its eighth annual "Feed the Force" event on Monday, July 4. 

We need your help! 

Donations of bottled water, soda, other beverages and food items (such as homemade cookies) are greatly appreciated. Cash gifts will help purchase pizza and other supplies. Volunteers also are needed to help transport and serve food at two locations. 

For more information about how to donate or volunteer, email Peg Danielson or call her at 831-429-1840 ext. 102.
Check out our Instagram takeover on Santa Cruz Life this Friday
Copyright © 2016 Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, All rights reserved.

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