County of Santa Clara logoIn a continued celebration of the County of Santa Clara’s 100th anniversary of preserving parklands, the Parks and Recreation Department is announcing new programs and initiatives that honor the past while looking forward to the future.

In 1924, Santa Clara County acquired 400 acres near Cupertino to establish a public park. Now known as Stevens Creek County Park, it laid the foundation for the modern-day Santa Clara County Parks system.

“I take great comfort knowing that parks like Stevens Creek will be here for generations. I love to think about the toddlers being pushed in strollers today by their parents who will one day be able to hike the trails with their own children,” said Supervisor Susan Ellenberg, president of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors.

As part of the County’s centennial of parklands, Parks has introduced the “Hike the Hundred” challenge. This self-guided scavenger hunt-style exploration adventure replaces the popular “Pix in Parks” challenge and features 13 unique hikes across different County Parks. It combines the joys of hiking with the excitement of discovering what makes each park unique.

“More than a century ago, some very thoughtful folks had a vision for the future. That vision included Stevens Creek Park. That initial acquisition of 400 acres ended up turning into a park system with 28 parks and more than 50,000 acres in Santa Clara County,” said County Supervisor Joe Simitian. “Our Hike the Hundred challenge encourages folks to get out into our great open spaces and connect with the land we value so much.”

In honor of the County’s centennial and Earth Day, Parks is expanding the Tree Steward Volunteer Program by committing to plant more than 100 trees across various County parks. This effort underscores the department’s commitment to environmental stewardship and climate resilience.

Don Rocha, director of Santa Clara County Parks, highlighted the significance of this initiative: “As we commemorate 100 years of county parklands and Stevens Creek, planting these trees symbolizes our ongoing effort to preserve and protect our natural habitats, ensuring they thrive for future generations to enjoy.”

In addition, this summer will see the introduction of the Boating Safety Festival at Stevens Creek County Park. The event, called “There’s Something in the Water,” aims to raise awareness about invasive mussel prevention and promote safe and responsible boating practices.

“There’s Something in the Water is not just about enjoying water recreation, it’s about protecting it,” said Rocha. “Educating our community about invasive species is key to protecting our waterways for years to come.”

The County Board of Supervisors established the Department of Parks and Recreation in 1956. The department was tasked with developing a first-class system of parks and comprehensive recreational opportunities. It is now one of California’s largest and most diverse regional park systems.

These new programs and initiatives further the department’s mission to provide diverse and inclusive recreational experiences while safeguarding the County’s precious natural resources.

For more information on these programs and initiatives, please visit or contact Interim Communications Officer Audrey Diaz.

Santa Clara County Parks and Recreation Department has provided recreational opportunities, beautiful parks, and precious natural resources to Santa Clara County residents for more than 65 years. This golden legacy has resulted in one of the largest regional park systems in the State of California.