At the Snohomish Conservation District annual Open House event, Paca Pride Guest Ranch was honored in the Commercial Farm area for their 2008 Cooperator of the Year Award. This award is presented in recognition of outstanding accomplishments in resource conservation. SCD Planner Amanda Ruzicka, who was also honored as Employee of the Year, presented the plaque to David Capocci, one of three owners of Paca Pride.
"We’re humbled and flattered to even have been considered for such an award when we really could not have done anything without the tremendous assistance and technical support from the Conservation District, " stated Capocci. "When we started this project, we knew having a Farm Plan in place was equally as important as our business plan. The Conservation District played an integral part of helping us establish this."
Throughout 2008, Paca Pride has worked closely with the Conservation District on a number of projects. The largest project, involved 5 acres of fencing for animals which protected the small creek and riparian areas adjacent to it. Paca Pride also made a significant purchase of trees and plants at the Conservation District’s annual plant sale. "We planted numerous firs, sequoias, and dogwoods in areas such as our critical slopes to help with erosion control and reforestation. Being able to obtain these plants at significant savings allowed us to plant even more than we had planned," explains Capocci.
Along with the award plaque, Paca Pride receives a "2008 SCD Merit Farm" sign to post at their entrance for the public to view. The sign explains that "this farm is implementing practices to: conserve natural resources and protect water quality."