SSince 2007, Paul J. Willis has hosted the Los Prietos Stafford Readings, an annual community reading of the poems of William Stafford at the First Crossing Day Use Area on Paradise Road in Los Padres National Forest. This is the former site of the Los Prietos Civilian Public Service Camp, where Stafford served as a conscientious objector during World War II.
15th Annual Stafford Reading
Saturday, January 28, 2023, 2:00 pm
Catherine Abbey Hodges
The reading takes place in an outdoor picnic area at 2:00 pm on the last Saturday of January. There are usually one or two featured readers, but anyone in attendance is also welcome to read a Stafford poem aloud.
The First Crossing Day Use Area does not have an address, but it is almost directly across the road from the Los Prietos Boys Camp, 3900 Paradise Road, Santa Barbara, CA 93105. (In case of rain, meet a mile down the road at the Los Prietos Ranger Station, 3505 Paradise Road, Santa Barbara, CA 93105.)
In 2012, with the permission of the United States Forest Service, the following interpretive display was erected on the site: