Redwood Parks Conservancy (RPC) is a non-profit cooperating association established to foster understanding, enjoyment, and stewardship of our public lands through educational outreach, visitor services, and support of our partners entrusted with the care of public lands along California’s north coast. Proceeds from sales at visitor centers and our online store are returned to the parks to fund special events, exhibits, signs, and publications, including the Redwood National and State Parks visitor guide. Visit RPC on Facebook (www.facebook.com/redwoodparks) or become a member of RPC and provide continuing support to the parks.
Our tax-exempt status
You know from your return visits to our Coast Redwood parks the incredible grandeur and rarity of these giants. Redwood Parks Conservancy, the official partner to public lands stewards on California’s far north coast, is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; EIN #68-0084901. We work in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, and California Department of Parks and Recreation to respond to a critical need for services and educational material which the public agencies alone cannot provide.
Visitor center sales
Redwood Parks Conservancy independently operates two state park visitor centers year-round and another seasonally. Additionally, we staff three visitor centers year-round and two seasonally in partnership with federal land stewards. Our gross sales exceed $1 million and allow us to return more than $400,000 in support to our partners. Every single item we sell is reviewed by a professional panel to assure it addresses an interpretive theme in the parks. We don’t sell ‘just anything’; we concentrate on educational books, maps and souvenirs specifically chosen to bring memories of our grand landscapes, immense trees, beaches and harbors to visitors when they are no longer here on the coast, breathing our sweet ocean air. When you donate or shop with us online or at our visitor centers you contribute directly to stewardship of our brand and rare redwood giants.
Sometimes the key to reliving an extraordinary experience is as simple as looking at a souvenir. Redwood Parks Conservancy works closely in partnership with California Department of Parks and Recreation and the National Park Service to staff visitor centers, develop and offer merchandise designed to spark those special memories, and provide educational programs and literature to our visitors.
Protecting irreplaceable burls
You may have heard that our parks have been experiencing an increase in illegal cutting and theft of old-growth coast redwood burls. This uncontrolled and illegitimate cutting not only injures live trees up to 2,000 years old, the prime resource of our parks, but also includes related impacts to scenery and endangered species in this designated World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve.
Park Rangers are aggressively investigating poaching cases and conducting increased law enforcement patrols, however, due to the large geographic area (133,000 acres), this land is difficult to protect. Numerous strategies have been implemented to address the problem but our parks lack the funds to accomplish the in-depth activities necessary to conclude investigations with convictions in the court room. Redwood Parks Conservancy is working to raise needed funds to purchase thermal imaging scopes, covert surveillance cameras and sensor systems. The threat is current and ongoing and our rangers have provided a list of equipment necessary not only to find burl poachers, but to prevent the poaching in the first place. We have a target of $61,000 needed for equipment.
Protecting our resources
We are especially fond of this quote from Theodore Roosevelt: “There can be nothing in the world more beautiful than the Yosemite, the groves of the giant sequoias and redwoods, the canyon of the Colorado, the canyon of the Yellowstone, the three Tetons, and our people should see to it that they are preserved for their children and their children’s children forever with their majestic beauty all unmarred.”
The part you can play
You can help by making a tax-deductible donation. We need to do all we can to make sure the redwoods remain unmarred and preserved for future generations, and we would sincerely appreciate your participation in preservation efforts.
On January 1, 2011, a merger of North Coast Redwoods Interpretive Association, established in 1976, and Redwood Park Association, established in 1985, became effective to create Redwood Parks Association. These two nonprofit associations were formed as cooperative associations with state and federal partners who manage public lands on California’s far-north coast. The two cooperating associations concentrated on book sales in park visitor centers.
In March 2016, the Board of Directors met and changed the organization name from Redwood Parks Association to Redwood Parks Conservancy (RPC). The name change better explains the expanding possibilities to support our public lands through grants, fund raising activities, events and becoming a partner in recreation and resource restoration. RPC will continue its mission of supporting our partners in ways we have traditionally - by funding interpretive positions, programs, educational material, by providing visitor center services, educational programs, and sales of a wide variety of interpretive and educational gifts. We are present in visitor centers throughout our partnership lands, including Smith River National Recreation Area, Tolowa Dunes State Park, Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Crescent City’s National Park Service Information Center, Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park, Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, Kuchel Visitor Center south of Orick, Patrick’s Point State Park, Humboldt Lagoons State Park, Fort Humboldt State Historic Park, and Headwaters Forest Reserve.
Redwood Parks Conservancy has adopted a broader concept of being part of the business and economic communities in both Del Norte and Humboldt counties (we are members of nine Chambers of Commerce), while still supporting education and visitor services of our partners. Last year, the Conservancy hired over 20 people who helped us realize gross sales exceeding one million dollars. We focus not only on providing post cards and souvenirs, reminding visitors about our beautiful public lands, but also highlighting local art and craft items for our international visitors.
We are a part of the local economy, providing both full-time and part-time employment as an equal opportunity employer supporting equity, diversity and inclusion. Come join our team!
We are governed by a Board of Directors who are committed to maintaining our public lands:
Zachary Zwerdling, Chairperson
Ross Welch, Vice-Chairperson
Anthony Stubbs, Treasurer
Mary Gearheart, Secretary
Lindsay Righter, Member
Bill Abler, Member
Larry Hendrix, Member
Kathleen Whiteside, Member
Alex Campbell, Member
Denver Nelson, Member