Two years ago, Jon Christensen and Stamen Design began to explore social media generated every day in California parks, open spaces and natural areas, from city centers to wilderness areas. So far, they have gathered social media from more than half a million unique users of Instragram, Flickr, Twitter, and Foursquare who have shared content in one or more of the 11,826 parks in California. The project, like this photo essay, shows that parks are social—that is, people do things in parks that they do in the rest of their lives. They also show that diverse Californians will see people like themselves in parks they do. It is hoped that representing this diversity will encourage more California to use their national, state, and local parks.

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