The California Department of Parks and Recreation agreed to open Standish-Hickey with a 30-day special event permit that started on July 7. In the meantime DPR continues to finalize a long-term partnership agreement with Team Standish, a local volunteer group, and the Mendocino Area Parks Association (MAPA).
”We were scrambling to get the park open,” said Carolyne Cathey, executive director of MAPA. Businesses in the Piercy and Leggett area, in particular the Peg House across from the park, were suffering losses because the campground was closed, and the park itself was being vandalized because it was vacant, Cathey said.
Team Standish, made up of residents and businesspeople in Leggett and Piercy, has been working since last November to find a way to keep Standish-Hickey open. Partnership with MAPA, a 501(c)3 non-profit, gave them legal standing and the help of an organization with experience in supporting parks.
For the time being, camping is offered on a first-come, first-serve basis, but once the long-term partnership agreement with DPR is final, reservations will be available through ReserveAmerica.
Team Standish's community volunteers will be working in the kiosk greeting visitors, assigning campsites, and providing information. Volunteers are also keeping the park facilities clean.
A paid staff of three persons to work in the kiosk, at least three maintenance workers, and a park manager will be hired once DPR finalizes the partnership agreement.
State Parks will provide security until the agreement is finalized, and then the Mendocino County Sheriff's Department will take over.
”It's been a team effort of Team Standish, MAPA, and DPR,” Cathey said, adding, “We have so many wonderful volunteers.”