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The Friends of the Carrizo Plain (FOCP)
The Carrizo Plain National Monument is jointly managed by The Nature Conservancy, California Department of Fish and Game, and The Bureau of Land Management.
The Friends of the Carrizo Plain exists as a separate and focused non-profit that supports the three organizations in the Education, Interpretation, and Conservation of the unique objects and resources of the Carrizo Plain National Monument.
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Carrizo Plain National Monument (CPNM)
The Carrizo Plain National Monument is jointly managed by The Nature Conservancy, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and The Bureau of Land Management. The size, object, resources, cultural values, isolation, and relatively undisturbed nature distinguish the Carrizo Plain National Monument as a critical location to implement long-term conservation, preservation and restoration of vanishing San Joaquin Valley flora and fauna. The CPNM is adjacent to and also includes important California Department of Fish and Wildlife ecological reserves that provide significant linkages of landscape, habitat and species to the Monument. The CPNM also includes the Caliente Mountain Wilderness Study Area that surrounds the highest peak in San Luis Obispo County.
The Greater Carrizo Plain Ecosystem
The greater Carrizo Plain ecosystem is traversed by the San Andreas fault, which has carved valleys, created and moved mountains, and yet close up, is seen in a subtle alignment of ridges, ravines and normally dry ponds.” “The plain is also an area culturally important to Native Americans.” –BLM.
A centerpiece of the Carrizo Plain is Soda Lake, a glistening bed of white salt set within a vast open grass and shrub-covered landscape and rimmed by the Temblor Range to the East and the Caliente Range to the West. The ecological communities of the Carrizo Plain extend from south of the Bitter Creek National Wildlife Refuge to north of Camp Roberts and east over the Temblors in to the San Joaquin Valley. This ecologically interconnected landscape supports the largest number (at least 109) of endangered, threatened and sensitive species in the state.
San Luis Outdoor Painters for the Environment, SLOPE, has created a distinctive exhibition and sale of over 30 native flora paintings dedicated to Carrizo Plain National Monument and Central Coast’s magnificent wildflowers. Castoro Cellars Gallery will host the exhibition, in conjunction with the Friends of Carrizo Plain.
Acclaimed SLOPE members have been painting vistas of wildflowers on the roadside along Shell Creek, in the Carrizo Plain and travelling the rural byways over hill and dale of this well-known wildflower corridor in San Luis Obispo County.
This exhibition includes original landscapes of blue and yellow flowers in iconic Shell Creek and the historic 82,000-acre Carrizo Plain National Monument. Paintings made on back roads with hidden views have been collected for this striking exhibit. The Friends of Carrizo Plain will receive a portion of SLOPE sales.
The Washburn Ranch in Carrizo was the base used for SLOPE painters to branch out to paint around Soda Lake, Painted Rock, The Temblor Range, The Caliente Range, the California Valley and areas near Wallace Creek, where the
San Andreas Fault can be observed. Remnants of old ranching operations dot the area. SLOPE artists were privileged to be hosted overnight at the Washburn Ranch.
The Opening Reception to commemorate SLOPE’s inspired artwork will be Saturday, May 2, 12-3 PM at Castoro Cellars Gallery, 1315 North Bethel Road, Templeton, CA 93465, 805.238.0725, www.castorocellars.com. The reception is free and open to the public, featuring a Friends of Carrizo Plain presentation, light refreshments, wine available for purchase by the glass and light guitar by Terry Sanville.
Tickets will be on sale to enter a drawing for a print of a featured painting. The drawing will be held at the Closing Reception at Castoro Cellars on Sunday, May 31, 1-4 PM; a last chance to meet the artists and explore the exhibit.
Plein air landscapes will be featured by Dennis Curry • Jan French • Sandi Heller • Dan Jones • Bernie Kurtz • Tracy Paz • •Rosanne Seitz • Laurel Sherrie • Jim Tyler.
WILDflowers, Paintings by SLOPE – Celebrating Native Flora
May 2-31, 2020
Opening Reception: May 2, 12-3 PM
Closing Reception: May 31, 1-4 PM
Hours: 10 AM – 5:30 PM daily
Castoro Cellars Gallery
1315 North Bethel Road, Templeton, CA 93465
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Membership & Donations
Projects and Activities
What we have done and what we are working on
Outreach – Ongoing
Provide Educational Outreach Displays at various public venues including: Morro Bay Winter Bird Festival, San Luis Obispo Earth Day Festival, and more. The FOCP also operates the gift shop at the Goodwin Education Center and provides the computerized kiosks at the...
Education – Ongoing
Encourage and provide financial support to local school field trips to the Carrizo Plain National Monument.
Fundraising – Ongoing
Conduct fundraisers and seek grants to support the mission of The Friends of the Carrizo Plain. Our fundraisers are to support our projects. We develop a long range Business Plan to highlight future projects we are trying to fund. View our most recent Business...
Community Support – Ongoing
Provide financial or logistical support to surrounding organizations including: Taft Chamber of Commerce Visitor’s Center, De-fencers of the Carrizo, and Santa Luis Obispo Earth Day Festival, Morro Bay Wild Bird Festival, and more. Encourage and provide financial...
Collaboration with BLM – Ongoing
Work with BLM to further educational goals for the Carrizo Plain National Monument. Provide Financial Support for the BLM’s annual National Public Lands Day events on the Carrizo Plain National Monument. Purchase most of the merchandise and manage all Bookkeeping,...
Friends provide news and interest articles to the Carrizo Guide, and send an update of the year’s activity to members at year’s end. The Friends are activity working on building a second annual publication that would be offset by 6 months from the publication of the...
Education and Educational Support The Friends have produced Educational Media on Birds, Wildflowers and other topics for use at the Goodwin Education Center. This includes both photographic references, first developed in 2008, and electronic access in the Education...
The Friends of the Carrizo Plain raise funds through the membership fees and the generous gifts of true Friends. We are anticipating a new program of grant writing to help us aid the Monument in light of reduced funding to Federal agencies. We are thankful for some...