Living a long, healthy, vibrant life is an essentially universal aim. Taking concrete, daily actions now, like prioritizing active hobbies, can help us all be stronger, mentally clearer, and more independent for the long term. Accessing quality public parks, trails and other amenities that promote greater activity is easier for some than others; zip code, where we live, can inform our health to as great an extent as genetic code: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27513279/ During Tuesday, February 8’s, Mid-Year Budget presentation, County Supervisor, Jessica Pyska, announced actions to make healthier living more accessible in District 5.
Pyska is dedicating $25,000 in cannabis tax funds to the Friends of Boggs and Redwood Trail Alliance, kicking off a $100,000 “Bring Back Boggs” fundraising campaign to rebuild trails in Boggs forest.
“Boggs Mountain Demonstration State Forest has long been a premier mountain biking destination,” notes Pyska. “Two big races in May will bring several thousand people, for the first time since before the Valley Fire! Bringing Back Boggs means a healthier, more economically vibrant Lake County. My family and I are in Boggs every week hiking, biking and exploring!”
Debbie St. Cyr, Executive Director of Redwood Trails Alliance, appreciates Pyska’s work to motivate support that goes beyond financial contributions: “She has shown up with her family to get dirty and dig trails in our beloved forest!”
“Please join me in thanking Debbie, Redwood Trails Alliance and the Friends of Boggs Mountain for their commitment to the recovery of the trails,” encourages Pyska. “We wouldn’t be here without their hard work and dedication!”
Pathways to Creating a “Blue Zone” in Lake County
On December 14, 2021, the Lake County Board of Supervisors adopted a Resolution supporting the Blue Zones Project Lake County, which is a “community-wide, evidence-based” effort to, “improve health and well-being,” and “[make] healthier choices easier for everyone.”
“Greater access to trails is one facet of promoting this philosophy in all of Lake County,” affirms Pyska.
“People are more likely to get in the habit of exercising when activities and amenities are accessible in their own areas,” explains Jamey Gill, Executive Director of the Blue Zones Project Lake County. “Positive social connections also build our capacity to make healthy choices, boosting our sense of well-being, and even lowering rates of chronic disease. Getting involved with initiatives like “Bring Back Boggs,” and regularly staying active and engaged with others not only brings economic benefits and workplace productivity to communities, it can help you live longer, and enjoy a greater quality of life!”
Promoting Well-Being by Limiting Wildfire Risk
“In California,” relates Pyska, “doing all we can to limit the risk of large-scale wildfire events is critical to our well-being. That is why I also plan to dedicate Cannabis funding this fiscal year to support the Northshore Fire Fund. Chief Mike Ciancio and his team use proven vegetation and wildfire fuel management techniques to protect the communities they serve. We are currently in talks to partner to bring those fuels crews and practices to District 5, and hope to announce an agreement soon.”
With Lake County currently in the midst of another dry winter, being proactive to mitigate wildfire risk can mean fewer days of smoke-driven air quality concerns this summer and fall.
“My fellow Board members and I want to see every Lake County resident have the opportunity to maximize their potential,” emphasizes Pyska. “Doing what we can to foster a healthy environment and access to amenities that promote more active lifestyle choices in every community is essential, and I am thrilled to be able to support these steps to realize that vision!”