California Forever!


The story of California State Parks—spanning from Yosemite in 1864 to the present day—dramatically comes to life in "California Forever," a two-part television program written and directed by David Vassar and co-produced by Sally Kaplan of Backcountry Pictures. Historic as well as contemporary characters, rare archival imagery, and stunning cinematography coalesce to create a powerful and moving viewing experience about the natural and cultural history of California celebrated in its parks. Herein lie not only the spark that ignited the "park idea" and the beginning of the American conservation movement, but also the challenges parks face now and into the future in California—challenges likely to be faced by parks across the nation.

The idea for the film was sparked after David and Sally watched the battle between conservationists and developers over the proposed Orange County Toll Road, which would have paved over a portion of San Onofre State Beach. David and Sally felt compelled to tell the story of California's state parks as a way to remind viewers of their value and to inspire their preservation and protection. Together, the two one-hour programs remind viewers of the importance of California's state parks as well as their priceless legacy.

Episode One, "California Forever: The History of California's State Parks" highlights the discovery and creation of California's state park system and celebrates the individuals and groups whose passion and commitment helped preserve and protect them for future generations. It takes viewers on a scenic, cultural and historical tour of California's state parks, highlighting the people, key events and locales that made California history.

Episode Two, "California Forever: Parks for the Future" presents the very real challenges that state parks are currently facing in California. Among these are habitat destruction by overuse; protection of native species at the expense of recreation; reclaiming industrial brown fields to create new parks in dense urban areas; and establishing historic sites that commemorate people and events from diverse cultures. "California Forever: Parks for the Future" is an invitation to make state parks more available to people of all ages and cultural backgrounds and to protect the myriad resources that countless dedicated individuals and groups have fought the last 150 years to preserve and protect.

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