Developing a relationship between the Pinnacles Park and the surrounding community was a goal of camp founder, Paula Grace

PAICINES — Students from San Benito rural schools will be roaming the hills again at Camp Pinnacles in the southern part of the county. The very successful science camp went through a difficult transition this past year when the inspiration behind the program, Paula Grace left her leadership role at the nonprofit Pinnacles Partnership due to family commitments. Grace had directed the Camp Pinnacles since its inception. Fortunately, the National Park Service staff at Pinnacles agreed to assume responsibility for the group and has scheduled another late spring camp. The popular science-based camp allows students to become familiar with many of the wildlife species and the magnificent landscape in this part of our county. The camp has been held at the nearby RS Bar Ranch over the last few years but will be moved back to the Pinnacles National Park for the 2013 camp.
Students from Cienega, Jefferson, Panoche and Bitterwater-Tully Schools as well as the Hollister Dual Language Academy have signed up for a day of exploration and hands-on science education. Public schools often use the 4th grade year as a chance to leave their school campus and study science in a unique location. Many San Benito schools traditionally have left the county for this experience. However, Pinnacles Camp gives students the opportunity to discover this dramatic and unpopulated region of their own county.
The newly designated Pinnacles National Park is also a base for the National Condor Recovery Program and students will learn more about it in the camp. The camp is an opportunity for family members to become involved in their children’s education and listen in on the Pinnacles Park field trips being held. One of the Pinnacles Partnership goals is to expand science- based learning as well as improve communication between Pinnacle National Park and the community that surrounds it.