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Friends of Camano Island Parks is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit all-volunteer organization on Camano Island. Our mission is to preserve, protect, acquire, and provide stewardship for the public properties on Camano IslandWhen we formed in 1991 there were 4 public properties totaling less than 300 acres and 3 miles of trails. Today our active volunteers provide more than 5000 of hours labor each year building and maintain trails, benches, plank walks, kiosks, and viewing platforms on 14 public properties covering 1600 acres with over 20 miles of trails. FOCIP has played a key role in most of these acquisitions. Our Backyard Wildlife Habitat program educates the public of the importance of living in harmony with nature.

Three Focused areas of the Mission

• To provide stewardship activities and projects which include implementation of Camano Island park improvements and maintenance.

• To provide educational programs and activities compatible with the preservation of the natural habitats and wildlife on Camano.

• To advocate for acquisition of appropriate Camano Island properties for the purpose of new State or County lands for parks trust or preserves.

Projects and activities related to these three goals are designed to improve the recreational services for the visiting public and local residents and promote protection of the wildlife habitat on the Island. Some specific examples of FOCIP involvement and activities are listed below:

Membership Focused Activities

  • Communication: promoting public interest by showing the properties to the public, local media notices, e-mail membership
  • Quarterly newsletters
  • Social Activities: Potluck dinners, Leading nature walks, Speakers, Work party lunch, Open Houses.

Stewardship

  • Volunteer work parties 2 to 3 Tuesdays a month.
  • General maintenance: leaf raking, litter pick up, construct benches, kiosks, painting; revegetation, trails, grounds weeded
  • FOCIP Adopt a Park Programs: Members may sign up to monitor and do light maintenance on their own schedule for a specific trail and/or section of a park. They report major needs to FOCIP leadership.

Project examples:

  • Camano Island State Park: Refurbished amphitheater, signage, built new trails benches, boardwalks
  • Cama Beach State Park. New trails, platforms, signage
  • Utsalady Point Park: Landscaping, fence & bench
  • Elger Bay & Camano Ridge Preserves: Trail construction, signage, nature trail, platform
  • Iverson Spit: Scotch broom removal, trail expansion with bridges
  • Four Springs Lake Preserve: Trails, Old Barn Restoration, BWH gardens
  • Camano Center: Perimeter trail & plantings & bench, Legacy Garden
  • English Boom Historical Park: Trail & signage
  • Kristoferson Creek & Marsh: platforms, trails
  • Barnum Point Preserve: Trails, signage, viewing platform
  • All parks: FOCIP built & donated benches and kiosks

Education

  • Organize & volunteer in two second grade beach & forest Nature Discovery Days (formally known as Education Days) each year.
  • Provide Interpretive programs, year round; clamming education, park brochures.
  • Education booths for community events.
  • Research & fund development of historical displays in state and county parks
  • Create and keep current natural world educational displays in FOCIP donated and/or maintained kiosks in Island County and State Parks.
  • Sponsor Camano Backyard Wildlife Habitat program.
  • Participate in Island County Road litter program.
  • Work with Island County agencies for new educational displays.

Acquisition

  • Sponsor & support land conservation projects
  • Acquisitions: English Boom, Ivy-Dry Lake Road Trailhead, Four Springs Lake Preserve, Davis Slough Heronry, Iverson Spit Preserve, Kristoferson Creek Property, Barnum Point Preserve, Henry Hollow Dog Park.

Community Involvement

  • FOCIP Camano Backyard Wildlife Habitat Project (BWH)
  • Chamber activities
  • Island County Adopt-a-Road litter pick-up
  • Guided nature & winter walks
  • Year-round BWH interpretive programs,
  • Local Partnerships:  Camano Chamber of Commerce, Native Plant Society, Whidbey Camano Land Trust, Sound Water Stewards, State and County Parks, Camano Center, Stanwood/Camano School District. Stanwood/Camano News & Stanwood Chamber, The Cama Beach Foundation

History

Our organization formed in 1991 as Friends of Cama to act as a liaison to encourage the State to purchase Cama Beach Resort for a State Park. In 1993 we helped convince the State that 400 + acres of forested land with a small lake and over a mile of salt-waterfront was a good idea. After the transfer was completed, our group change its name and mission and became what it is today Friends of Camano Island Parks.

Today we continue our mission to acquire, improve and preserve our wooded and natural properties for all to enjoy. We have played active roles in the acquisition of 1600 acres of public land.

We promote educational programs so that the public appreciate and respect our natural surroundings through our Backyard Wildlife Habitat program, our monthly public walks, and Nature Discovery Days for the second-grade students of Utsalady, and Elger Bay elementary schools.

Become a member of FOCIP!