Building Alliances to Protect the Park We All Love No. 85 Spring/ Summer 2016
As Three Dog Night — or, more recently,
Aimee Mann — famously crooned, “One is the loneliest number.” It sure can be. That’s why here at ABF, we create and sustain partnerships. We don’t want to find ourselves alone in our mission like a single tumbleweed bouncing down Palm Canyon Drive. Instead, we reach out and form alliances with individuals and organizations that help us fulfill our goals. Like any good relationship, our partnerships are chosen carefully and ultimately make us better. Of course the Park is our #1 partner from whom we would never stray! Without AnzaBorrego Desert State Park, what would be the point of Anza-Borrego Foundation? To put it dramatically and in French terms, we would have no raison d'être. In addition to the Park, our partnerships with the Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center, volunteers, donors and sponsors help us do and be more as an organization. In turn, those alliances aid the Park. So let’s take a closer look now at each of these partners and how they increase ABF’s reach and impact: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Without question, ABF exists to serve the needs of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (ABDSP) as the Park’s official nonprofit partner. Everything we do is in concert with ABDSP: for, with and because of. For example, Anza-Borrego Foundation acquires land for conservation in and around the Park, educates the public about the Park’s
resources, and supports research relevant to the region. We raise funds for ABDSP through memberships, donations, and the sales of clothing and other items at the State Park Store and the Visitor Center. Revenues raised help fund interpretive programs, youth education programs, equipment used by rangers and park staff, the free park magazine that is distributed to over 50,000 visitors a year, and more. In fact, last year 77 cents of every dollar we raised went to support the Park! When Anza-Borrego was formed in the early 1930s, it was checker-boarded by thousands of acres of private land inholdings — one estimate is as high as 68,000 acres, about 11% of the current Park! A primary aspect of ABF’s mission is to conserve land by purchasing these private inholdings (and other properties adjacent to the Park’s boundaries) from willing sellers. Once the sale is complete and all the proper paperwork has been filed, then the land officially becomes part of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. To date, ABF has acquired more than 54,000 acres for ABDSP. Looking to the future, we will continue striving to acquire more of the remaining inholdings to make our Park whole and conserve wilderness areas in perpetuity. We will also continue to educate youth and adults — and offer research opportunities that increase the public’s understanding and enjoyment of this precious desert, which brings us to our next partner. continued on page 5
From the President I expect that most readers of this letter already understand the feelings
that come once you are captured by the beauty, serenity and permanence of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. But what I hope with these comments is that first-time visitors or chance readers will discover something that will lure them again to this very special place.
BOARD of TRUSTEES: Ernie Cowan PRESIDENT
Lynn Rhodes TREASURER Ralph Singer SECRETARY
TRUSTEES: Janie DeCelles Sharon Goldsmith John Peterson Philip Pryde Bill Reavey Joan Schneider Jim Smith Linda Tandle Dick Troy David Van Cleve Mike Wells ABF STAFF: Paige Rogowski
DONOR RELATIONS MANAGER
LAND PROGRAM COORDINATOR
INTERPRETIVE SALES MANAGER
Christina St John SALES ASSISTANT
ANZA-BORREGO FOUNDATION PO Box 2001 587 Palm Canyon Drive #110 & 111 Borrego Springs, CA 92004 (760) 767-0446 www.TheABF.org Info@TheABF.org Anza-Borrego Foundation is a non-profit, tax-exempt [IRS code 501(c) (3)] charitable organization DESERT UPDATE: ABF Staff Carey Raffetto
I began my love affair with Anza-Borrego when I was a child, camping here as a Boy Scout and then learning to explore on my own as I earned my freedom with a driver’s license. I’ve climbed most of the desert peaks, visited isolated palm groves, counted desert bighorn sheep in searing summer heat, but I’ve never tired of the beauty, mysteries, natural solitude and challenges only found here. Imagine following the unchanged path of the Anza Expedition that opened the first overland route into California in 1775–76, or gazing out from a Badlands overlook to a landscape that has not changed since some ancient man left the first human footprints in the sand. I challenge you to slip your hand into the wide mouth of a Native American clay pot and not be moved as you feel the fingerprints of its ancient maker. These are just a few of the things that I love about Anza-Borrego. I can return to the same places I visited as a young Boy Scout and find them unchanged. Is there anything else in our lives that provides such a touchstone of permanence? Then there is solitude. You can be totally alone here, and for some that can be frightening. But there are wonderful lessons that come from wilderness solitude, including self-awareness and self-confidence, awareness of the world around you, and a connection with wildlife, history and even the geology. Soon you tune into the rhythms of nature. You become hopelessly connected and enamored with the desert. But the great lesson from all of this is that this does not happen by accident. As Southern California populations grow, open spaces are shrinking — and there is nothing I alone (or any of us alone) can do to safeguard these remarkable places. To preserve Anza-Borrego requires partnerships. Fortunately, the citizens of California saw the value in preserving open space with the creation of the first California State Park in 1864. In 1932, lands were set aside to create what we know today as Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. While this was significant, the Park was a Swiss cheese, dotted with 68,000 acres of private holdings that, in many cases, threatened access to palm groves, scenic wonders or prime wilderness areas. Another partner was added when the Anza-Borrego Committee of the Desert Protective Council (ABC) was formed in 1967 with the mission “to support and acquire land for Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.” In 1989, ABC became recognized as an independent charitable organization known as the Anza-Borrego Foundation. Since the creation of this partnership with the Park, ABF has acquired over 54,000 acres through donations and purchases. This is a significant accomplishment that will further ensure protection of the area. I began with ABF in 1972, and as President now in 2016, I am excited about the dedicated and engaged board we have and our continued efforts to strengthen our partnerships with California State Parks overall and Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in particular. We continue to expand our partnerships, now launching our first year of “In Focus” with the UCI Research Center. In Focus programs provide a closer look at this magnificent state park through a series of in-depth learning experiences on topics such as botany, insects, native cultures, geology and meteorology. Such programs will build awareness of and appreciation for the Park, and help ABF in our mission. None of this is possible without a strong donor pool. Thankfully, there are many of you out there who love the desert as much as I do. As demands and pressures continue to increase, we need your help more than ever. Thank you for your continued support.
Sara Jacobi Design
Printed in U.S.A. on 50% postconsumer recycled paper.
Weekend in April, providing exciting activities for park visitors. Additionally, Archeology Stewards are trained to record, observe and protect our multitude of cultural sites throughout the Park.
Superintendent’s Corner by Kathy Dice, ABDSP Superintendent
There has been “growing” excitement around here as the wildflowers sprout, bud, and bloom. The winter’s El Niño effect did not reach into the desert as we had hoped, but it did bring enough moisture in the right combination to encourage a variety of flowers to show themselves and add spring perfume to the air. It has been an exceptionally good year for the desert lily and now the primrose, sunflower and verbena are getting into the act. Spring is always the favored time of year to visit the desert — but to see it in other seasons of the year is to understand the true miracle of a wildflower bloom! Spring is also a time of year when we recognize the value of our staff, volunteers and park partners. Everyone pulls out the stops to provide services to park visitors on every level during this busy season. It’s all those extras that make this Park so wonderful! Anza-Borrego Foundation supports operations at the Visitor Center, as do the volunteer groups who do so much for the Park. For example, the Colorado Desert Archeology Society Park Volunteers work with ABF to get ready for the special Archeology
In addition, Camp Hosts greet our camping public, and Trailhead Volunteers give advice on preparing for a hike up Borrego Palm Canyon. Our Adopt- A-Wash Volunteers do routine patrols of some favored areas of ABDSP and help park staff with special clean-up projects, while Paleontology Society Park Volunteers locate and conserve the Park’s priceless fossil record. In March we take a short but important breather to hold an appreciation dinner as a small token of thanks to celebrate all these remarkable volunteers who partner with the Park through their passion for this desert. Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is also very fortunate to now be included in the University of California Natural Reserve system as a partner to the new UC Irvine, Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center in Borrego Springs. We have long wanted to provide a place for researchers to study, work and stay within the Park. There are many things we would like to know more about so that we can make better-informed resource management decisions for Anza-Borrego. AnzaBorrego Foundation donated land to the Research Center to provide a larger base for its operations. ABF also serves as a partner to both the Park and UC Irvine in the realm of bringing educational programs to the public via the Research Center. Anza-Borrego Desert State Park depends on its partners on so many levels. I could not be more pleased to call Anza-Borrego Foundation our best friend in helping us to keep the wheels turning and making sure our park staff, volunteers and other partners are well cared for.
ABF Welcomes New Trustees and Staff Janie DeCelles has a diverse background in marketing and finance, as well as a deep level of commitment to nonprofit organizations and conserving nature. A graduate of Penn, with an MBA from Harvard Business School, she worked in commercial real estate before focusing on long-term care planning. She also founded an international wine exporting and marketing company. Retired, Janie is active with numerous nonprofit organizations in the area, including the San Diego Foundation’s Regional Disaster Board, San Diego River Park Foundation, A Reason to Survive (ARTS) and others. She is an avid photographer, glass blower and wood worker. Mike Wells retired in 2010 after 35 years with California State Parks, beginning and ending that career at ABDSP. His first permanent assignment with CSP was as a Ranger at the Park (1977–81), and his final post was as Colorado Desert District Superintendent (2006– 10). Mike spent part of his career as a resource ecologist and in 2001 received a doctorate in biogeography (San Diego State University/UC Santa Barbara) with a research focus on the conifer/oak forests of Cuyamaca. He continues to teach at the University of San Diego. Mike has served as a board member of two state park cooperating associations and as a liaison with two others, including ABF. He is a graduate of UC Santa Barbara and has a master’s in physical geography from SDSU.
Joan Schneider is an archaeologist who has worked for more than 30 years in desert regions, including the Colorado, Sonoran, Mojave, Gobi and Negev. She has also conducted field research projects in Mongolia, Israel, and the U.S. national parks of Joshua Tree and Death Valley. A former Associate State Archaeologist for California State Parks’ Colorado Desert District, Joan continues to teach and pursue her research interests. She has directed the Archaeology of the Mongolian Steppe project in Ikh Nart Nature Reserve (ABDSP’s sister park) since 2010. She works closely with Native American governments and individuals, including as a consultant with the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians (Serrano). After a career change from the health sciences, Joan received her master’s and doctoral degrees in anthropology from UC Riverside. Barry Dean joined as ABF’s Staff Assistant in February. He discovered Anza-Borrego Desert State Park by accident and instantly fell in love with the beauty of the land. Barry jumped at the chance to transition from his career in sales to working for ABF, as he finds value in conserving the Park that means so much to him. In his spare time you will find Barry volunteering at the Visitor Center or enjoying a hike in the Park.
www.TheABF.org Desert Update Spring/Summer 2016
Why I Give Golden Joy Dan Leidecker Dan Leidecker is the kind of guy you don’t forget after meeting: always smiling and ready to go, expecting the best of each day! He is a wonderful asset to the Park, greeting visitors at the Visitor Center with a friendly, charismatic and knowledgeable disposition — and helping to turn their Anza-Borrego Desert State Park experiences into lifelong memories.
we partnered with Dan to raise the funds needed to make the fix happen, now! With a new social fundraising tool, ABF created a webpage where Dan shared the story of the Visitor Center Theater and the importance of educating visitors through video. The campaign was a success thanks to Dan and his willingness to share the importance of rescuing this education tool. Over $5,000 was raised in just a few weeks, which has been matched with park funds to get the theater up and running before the busloads of spring visitors arrived.
Originally from Washington State, Dan and his wife, Steff, first arrived in Borrego Springs on a camping recommendation. They owned a home in Mexico on the Sea of Cortez and frequently passed by Anza-Borrego Desert State Park on their way from Washington, but they had never stopped. In 2007 they decided to check out Anza-Borrego — and stayed for a while. They camped at Palm Canyon, hiked, and learned about the area through the Visitor Center and park interpretation programs. Coming from the similar setting of the Sonoran Desert in Mexico, Borrego Springs was a natural fit for Dan and Steff, who were looking to relocate their winter home to the States. By the end of 2008, they did exactly that by purchasing property in Borrego Springs.
Knowledge and education have a special spot in Dan’s heart. He feels that education is the key to better understanding the value of the Park and preserving it forever. In fact, when the Park and ABF were faced with the reality of a failing Visitor Center Theater and the anticipation of flocks of wildflower visitors to the Park,
Dan has shown his appreciation for Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in many ways — as a robust volunteer, hike leader, educator, fundraiser, donor and trail keeper. Why does Dan do it? He says, “The joy you receive enhancing the experience of a visitor to the Park is golden.” You can find Dan four days a week riding his bike from home to Palm Canyon and back. Dan says, “I know every boulder on the trail!” You may even find him sweeping the first few sand-covered rock steps leading into the trail, keeping hikers safe from a slippery fall. Thank you, Dan, for sharing your passion for the Park and supporting the Foundation so that we may all make a greater impact in protecting this special parkland for future generations!
Vallée Art for Sale Austrian-born painter Armand F. Vallée (1921–2008) had a deep admiration for the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park that is unmistakable in his artwork. ABF is fortunate to be able to reproduce some of his beautiful watercolors in postcards & magnets. We recently received 5 new postcards (50 cents each) and 3 new magnets ($3 to $5 each). Available at the Visitor Center and State Park Store. 4
Spring/Summer 2016 Desert Update www.TheABF.org
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While settling into their new home, Dan dug right in to learning as much as he could about the Park and its resources. In 2011 Dan graduated from the Visitor Center Volunteer Class, CIG Certification course and the Roving Naturalist course. He loves being a park volunteer and constantly expanding his knowledge of the area. “There is a niche for everyone who wants to be a volunteer,” he says. Dan is currently taking the Botany Certification course and leading monthly tours of Ghost Mountain, the former home of Marshal South.
November 4-6, 2016
The 2016 Colorado Desert Natural History Research Symposium will be held November 4-6, 2016. We will be celebrating 50 Years of Anza-Borrego Foundation and our work of supporting Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.
...Park We All Love continued from page 1
Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center We are thrilled that Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is now home to a new Natural Reserve campus, managed by UC Irvine. The University of California Natural Reserve System supports universitylevel research and instruction at various natural areas in California. Its mission is “to contribute to the understanding and wise management of the Earth.” The Anza-Borrego campus is located at the Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center, which was the former “Desert Club.” For ABF, the local Natural Reserve campus started as a vision. We met with the Department of Parks & Recreation (DPR) in 2003 to discuss creating a physical place where university-led research could inform park management. In 2007, we found a partner in UC Irvine through Associate Professor Diane Pataki. Private funds and grant money were raised, and then ABF, DPR and UCI formed a formal partnership in 2012. To provide enough space for the facility, ABF gifted 74 acres adjacent to the Research Center. Construction and renovation finished in 2014, which means that the Research Center is now officially open for business — the business of research! The Natural Reserve includes all 630,000+ acres of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park and the physical building of the Research Center. ABF also has an office there. Now that this exciting feat has been accomplished through hard work and partnerships, we want to make sure that you, the public, benefit. It is ABF’s goal to connect people with the research happening right here in our Park. As such, we are providing a public education program in conjunction with UCI called “AnzaBorrego: In Focus.” It consists of a lecture series, field trips and an annual research symposium. The programs take place at the Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center, followed by excursions into the Park for a more in-depth and in-the-field study of the subject at hand. Please check our website for the latest offerings, and stay tuned as this exciting partnership develops! Volunteers What if you could quantify the value of volunteer time? Well, an organization called Independent Sector has done just that. They estimate that the hourly value of volunteer work in California in 2014 was $26.87. By applying that hourly rate of $26.87 to the 2014–2015 fiscal year, we estimate that the 26,000 volunteer hours documented by ABDSP were worth just shy of $700,000! That’s an incredible savings to our Park! Dedicated volunteers donated their time at the Visitor Center, through the Paleontology, Natural Resources, and Archaeology Departments of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park/ Colorado Desert District, and in other capacities. In doing so, they provided a lot in passionate sweat equity. Wow!
However, in another aspect, there is no doubt that the gift of time and energy that park volunteers provide is unquantifiable. How do you really put a number on that kind of dedication? Volunteers curate, survey, guide, educate and more. As these individuals give of themselves, they give to the Park and the public — and for that, we are incredibly grateful. Donors & Sponsors “I wondered why somebody didn’t do something. Then I realized: I am somebody.” —Unknown No matter how great or small our contributions are, they all matter. Whether it’s time or money that someone dedicates to our precious Park, the effects of those actions are felt. That’s why we appreciate every little bit that people give to ABF! For the 2014–2015 fiscal year, we raised about $80,000 through membership fees, which are charitable donations. In addition, we received about 600 other donations for $240,000, which brought our fundraising total to $320,000. You don’t have to be wealthy to make an impactful contribution of $10 to $25. In fact, many of our donors give exactly that. We appreciate every penny we receive and promise to put your money to good use in support of this Park we all love.
At ABF, we also owe a big thanks to our Borrego Partners and Sponsors. These are businesses that recognize the importance of the Park to the local economy and want to give back, while also encouraging their customers to learn more about Anza-Borrego. Borrego Partners are local businesses that provide an annual donation of $250 to ABF, as well as offering discounts on goods and services to ABF members. This year’s Borrego Partners are Bike Borrego, Borrego Outfitters, Borrego Rentals, Borrego Springs Resort & Spa, California Overland Desert Excursions, Carlee’s, Jilberto’s Taco Shop, Kendall’s Cafe, Palm Canyon Hotel & RV Resort, Regalos de Borrego, RoadRunner Club and The Springs at Borrego. ABF Sponsors are businesses (local or otherwise) that donate at a higher level to ABF — most have services or products that promote enjoyment and appreciation of the Park. This year’s Borrego Sponsors are Borrego Valley Inn, La Casa del Zorro and Oceanside Photo & Telescope. Through all these partnerships we have benefitted. Looking to the future, we know that with alliances in place, we will continue to flourish with the help of people just like you. So thanks, partner! www.TheABF.org Desert Update Spring/Summer 2016
Celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Anza-Borrego Desert Photo Contest 2016 marked the tenth year of the Anza-Borrego Desert Photo Contest, and there were some major changes put into play this year. We joined forces with Borrego Art Institute, included a digital component to the contest, and kept the Gallery Show as our big finish. So how did this new foray into the digital world go? As expected it was full of surprises, kinks along the way, and unexpected road bumps. We can say we learned a lot, and we do expect to be ready to go with a reformatted digital contest before the end of spring.
ADULT The Mud Must Have Been Just So Duncan Sinclair 1st Place, Macro
Get out your cameras and keep on taking photographs of this special place; weâ€™d love to see what youâ€™ve got in store for us next year!
ADULT Climber Don Barrie 1st Place, Black & White ADULT Autumn Ocotillo Howard Dreskin 1st Place, Plants
ADULT Golden Morning Stroll Jim Densmore 1st Place, Animals
ADULT Spring In Borrego Garett Wood 1st Place, Landscapes
ADULT Desert Stargazing Andrew Shaver 1st Place, People and Best of Show
Spring/Summer 2016 Desert Update www.TheABF.org
YOUTH Canyon Plant Katarina Rufio 1st Place, Plants
YOUTH What's In There Miriam Hernandez 1st Place, People
YOUTH Evidence of Rain Summer Rothert 1st Place, Landscapes and Best of Show
YOUTH Following The Crack Sasha Barron 1st Place, Animals
Celebrate Lucky 5 With Us In late 2015, Anza-Borrego Foundation secured the acquisition of the Lucky 5 Ranch in the Laguna Mountains. Now that the weather is warmer you are invited to join ABF as we celebrate this achievement that was decades in the making. On Saturday, June 18, 2016 festivities will begin at 10:00 a.m. with tours and hikes around the property. VIP tickets are available in limited quantities for an exclusive insider tour and a champagne toast. At midday guests are invited to â€œgrazeâ€? on food and drinks, listen to live music, participate in an auction and celebrate the people who made the acquisition possible. Following the grazing and gathering, guests are invited to stay for a second round of hikes and tours on the property.
VIP Tickets $255 General Tickets $55
Reserve your spots today at TheABF.org/Ranch.
www.TheABF.org Desert Update Spring/Summer 2016
ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED
Anza-Borrego Foundation P.O. Box 2001 Borrego Springs, CA 92004
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Century Circle Members Benefactor's Circle David and Peg Engel George and Lucy Steers Cynthia Stribling and Paul Webb Joan and Martin Rosen Kirsten Winter and Charles Vantassel Eleanor Schubert Hank and Christie Barber Dan and Steff Leidecker Bud Getty Dennis and Debra Stanger Bruce Crabtree Paige and Chris Rogowski Karen and Anthony DeLorenzo Herb Stone Kenneth and Marion Reid Mark and Kelley Jorgensen Fred and L. Louise Jee Wendy Youngren Pat Carson Jack and Arlene Oakes Philip Pryde Larry and Peggy Puzzo John and Christine Murphy Clifford and Carolyn Colwell Steve and Carolyn Conner Richard Fowler and Terry Begole Fowler Thomas Garner Judith Begole Rahner Homer and Bettina Townsend
John Martinez John Peterson Alan and Jay Creutz Bruce Heimbach Florian Boyd Bruce and Christine Clegg Jim and Linda Roller Ralph and Rosalie Webb Melvin and Ellen Sweet Linda Tandle Susan Gilliland President's Circle Eric Mustonen and Amee Wood Bonnie and Nicholas Clapp Diane and Frank Hydoski Bill and Nancy Homeyer Janet and John Kister Michael Wells and Prof. Marie Simovich Elizabeth Javens Jim and Kathy Dice Bob and Barbara Kleist Donald J. Stang and Helen Wickes Steve Burch Elizabeth Levin Callie Mack and Phil Roullard
Founder's Circle Gabriel and Diana Wisdom Douglas and Peggy Magde Sharon and Jerry Goldsmith Ann Keenan Jim and Judy Smith Karen Smith Jeanne Johnstone and George Jefferson Vanessa Rusczyk Barbara Oyler Ralph Singer and Lou Bahar Mike Medema Leslie and John McQuown Grants and Business Donors Oceanside Photo/Telescope Astr Soc Porter Sesnon Foundation Resources Legacy Fund San Diego County San Diego Gas & Electric Sunbelt Publications The Foster Family Private Foundation The Heller Foundation of San Diego The Pratt Memorial Fund at Union Bank of California San Diego County Archaeological Society