Rain. All day. Rain. And in the off-leash dog park at El Chorro Park, piles of mulch and wood chips. all generously donated by Davey Tree Service, Greenvale Tree Company, Coastal Tree Experts and the County tree crews. Piles and piles. Huge behemoths, mountain high piles as far as the eye can see. All of which had to be spread over the ground of the dog park.
And standing there with a few pitchforks were a handful of dog park volunteers. Dismayed. Overwhelmed by the mountains of mulch when, suddenly, the white CCC van pulled into the parking lot. And out piled 15 young professionals, dressed in bright rain slickers, who unpacked their equipment, and with nary a word started in to work.
THE CAVALRY HAD ARRIVED!
Modeled after the original federal Conservation Corps in 1933, the California Conservation Corps was signed into law in 1976 by then-Governor Brown who envisioned the Corps as “a combination Jesuit Seminary, Israeli kibbutz and Marine Corps boot camp.”
The Corps became a permanent state department in 1983 and the young men and women have been living up to its motto ever since: "Hard work, low pay, and miserable conditions.”
Which, of course, results in fabulous conservation work all over the state. Our local Los Padres Corps, with Meggan Gehring as the team leader, is located at Camp San Luis and is constantly involved throughout the county in trail rehabilitation and construction, fire hazard reduction, tree and native plant restoration, park development and watershed work at the Morro Bay Estuary. So, when you see the C’s at work, honk and wave, or stop and say Thank You. They’re making your public places beautiful.
By the end of the afternoon, the results were in: 130++ cubic yards of wood chips spread and a total of 110 hours of volunteer time put in to keep the dog park up and running and ready public use for another year.
El Chorro Dog Park was built 11 years ago and is maintained by SLO-4-PUPs and all the wonderful volunteers who do the hard work involved in keeping it so beautiful. And this workday was no exception, except everyone went above and beyond duty, including Karyn, who replaced some of the damaged boards on the picnic tables, a tricky job even in dry weather. And our wonderful volunteer mulch hurlers:
Wes and Valerie
And one Inspector General reviewing the work. The ever loyal . . . and very wet . . . Lucky
A big thank you to everyone. And if you haven’t visited the El Chorro Do Park, stop by. You’ll see what wonderful things can be accomplished with a whole lot of helping hands.