An evening of film and discussion on The Future of Our State Parks

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Join SYRCL’s Wild & Scenic Film Festival and the  Nevada Theatre Film Series for an evening of film and discussion on The Future of Our State Parks August 5th, 7:30 pm at the Nevada Theatre.  This event is a fundraiser for a film about how youth helped save the South Yuba River State Park.

Last May, California announced plans to close one quarter of their 278 parks—a devastating move that was intended to save the state a mere $22 million per year. The closure list included thousands of acres of park land, recreation areas, wildlife reserves, and 50% of the state’s historic parks.   Governor Jerry Brown recently vetoed funding for State Parks in the new California budget.  This veto assures that the parks on the closure list will either close this summer, enter into temporary operating agreements, or find non-profit partners to help run the parks.  What will be the long-term consequences for these gems of publicly owned land?  What legacy will our kids inherit?

A huge outpouring of local support, including many young people, was successful in removing South Yuba River State Park (SYRSP) from the closure list.  The future of many other State Parks, including our own Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park (used extensively by school groups), is still uncertain.  At this event you will see short films about California’s state parks, meet the young filmmakers of The First 70 in its Nevada County premiere, learn about pending legislation in the house & senate that would protect parks, meet the young activists who were instrumental in the removal of SYRSP from the closure list, hear from experts about the role of youth in using and protecting public lands, and much more.

The First 70 is a short film that showcases an inspiring journey through California to visit the 70 majestic state parks slated to close this summer. Three young filmmakers set out last May on a 3,000 mile trip around California after the state announced plans to close one quarter of their 279 parks. The First 70 beautifully portrays the individuals who have put their heart and soul into maintaining and caring for these remarkable resources.  Our local youth & SYRCL play a prominent role in the film.

We will also show A Salton Soul, a quirky short film by three young film students.  This film explores the pending fate of the Salton Sea, the largest inland body of water in California, and also on the list of state parks set to close.  June Eilers came to the Salton Sea when her father opened the Date Palm Beach resort in the Roaring Twenties. From simple summer swimming to a backdrop for meeting her future husband, the Salton Sea has provided June with a lifetime of priceless memories. As the sea slowly begins to dry up, she reflects on the importance of nature and enjoying the outdoors in our lives.

Tickets will be available in advance, beginning July 2nd, at the SYRCL office and Briar Patch Co-Op or at the door.  Ticket prices are adults: $10 (advance)/$12 (door) & students (k-12): $7.  For more information visit SYRCL’s website at

“State Parks are diverse landscapes of untouched wilderness that our civilization has chosen to protect for the tranquility and awe they bring to all who come to experience their majestic grandeur. The hard work of the individuals who had the vision and determination to preserve 70 of these precious places is being discarded. My hope is that The First 70 will be a reminder that doing what’s right is always more important than doing what looks good on paper” states Jarratt Moody, Filmmaker, The First 70.

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