About the California State Park Adventure Pass

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The State of California believes in the right of all Californians to have access to recreational opportunities and to enjoy the cultural, historic and natural resources found across the state. Too many Californians cannot access the state’s parks, beaches and outdoor spaces, nor the state’s array of museums and cultural and historical sites. Given this, the California Natural Resources Agency and California State Parks are prioritizing efforts to expand all Californians’ access to parks, open space, nature and cultural amenities. Doing so advances Governor Gavin Newsom’s strong personal commitment to building a “California for All.”

Championed by the First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom, whose California for All Kids initiatives support children’s physical, mental and social-emotional well-being, Assembly Bill 148 established the California State Park Adventure Pass, a three-year pilot program that waives day-use entrance fees to 19 state parks for fourth graders and their families for a full year. Applying is simple. Learn more about the application process at parks.ca.gov/AdventurePass. 

The governor also signed Senate Bill 129, legislation that includes $5.6 million to fund the new State Park Adventure Pass as well as $3 million to establish the State Library Park Pass Program, a new two-year pilot program to provide state park passes to libraries across the state that may be checked out by library patrons to gain free day-use access to state parks. (A public announcement on this program is anticipated for later this fall.)

According to a recent report from the Center for American Progress, 70% of low-income communities across the country live in nature-deprived areas. Studies from the Children and Nature Organization indicate that access to parks and greenspace can lead to improvements in children’s physical well-being, social emotional learning and academic outcomes, with children experiencing reduced stress and demonstrating more enthusiasm for school. One study found that every $1 invested in trails for physical activity led to $2.94 in medical benefits. 

With the leadership of the governor and first partner, California was able to create for the very first-time innovative access programs for children and families to explore state parks. More diverse communities will have the opportunity to become part of California’s landscape, enjoy the physical and mental benefits of connecting with nature, and be inspired to take care of these treasured places for future generations. 

To view all the access programs offered by State Parks, please visit parks.ca.gov/OutdoorAccessForAll.