Leslie and Susan

Love of Lands End – Forty Years and Counting

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Leslie and Susan

We recently caught up with Silver Lupine Circle member Leslie, who shared with us her long connection with Ocean Beach and Lands End: 

How were you introduced to the parks?  From my first visits as a young girl searching for sand dollars on Ocean Beach in the early 70’s, I have been drawn to the Seal Rocks and all that is now Lands End.  I’d take MUNI with a friend to Ocean Beach, and we’d play and collect stuff – we had so much freedom.  The natural elements of the Pacific Ocean, the rocks, seals, birds, and whales are each fascinating on their own.  Then add the history, the ruins, the incredible restoration of habitat showcasing the cypress trees and views, the Lands End Lookout – and you have the promise of a lifetime of exploration and adventure.  I was always asking my parents to take my siblings and me up there, and we’d get hot cocoa at the Cliff House. 

How has your connection with the parks evolved?  Since leaving the Bay Area for college, I have returned to the Seal Rocks annually.  First with my parents and then with my partner Susan, we'd pack snacks and windbreakers and head out.  It is usually colder or foggier than we’d remember, sometimes requiring us to buy a sweatshirt or two at Lands End.  

What made you decide to make a legacy commitment to the Parks Conservancy?  Even with the distance in time and place, our connections to these sites are strong. “Parks for All Forever” really resonates with us.  Susan and I both feel deeply about preserving natural spaces and helping them remain accessible for everyone, and we knew that we wanted to leave something to things we care about, and so we have named the Parks Conservancy as a beneficiary of our estate plan.  

What else would you like to share?  We’ve watched Lands End transform from a weed garden into a world-class park when the trees came down, the views were opened up, and new accessible trails were created, for a safer, cleaner and inspiring experience.  We can watch the iconic seals on the rocks, the marine traffic through the Golden Gate, the trails, the views of the Golden Gate Bridge.  We always want to come back for this.  It beckons. 

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More than ever, we need public lands where communities can come together