Picnic in the Park

Launched in 2011

For many children who receive free and reduced-priced meals during the school year, summer can mean hunger.

Each summer, children wait for the last bell of the school year. Summer is an exciting time for children to enjoy playtime with friends, a week at camp, a family vacation, or time at the pool. But for many children who receive free and reduced-priced meals at school, summer can mean hunger.

PIP logo basket

Just as learning does not end when school lets out, neither does a child’s need for good nutrition. In fact, 84% of children in our county who receive free or reduced-priced lunches during the school year don’t receive any meal assistance during the summer, a time of critical brain development. That’s 34,000 children in our community.

Picnic in the Park offers free, healthy meals, fun physical activities and nutrition education opportunities to ensure that summer is fun for all kids in our county.

Who is Served

All children ages 1 – 18, now at 16 key locations throughout the county.

How the Program Works

Picnic in the Park Program

The Foodbank provides free nutritious meals to children in our county during the summer as part of the USDA Summer Food Service Program. Healthy summer meals are served at 16 locations countywide – Monday thru Friday for 11 weeks. There are no income requirements, and any child 18 and under is welcome to come and receive a free, delicious lunch every weekday this summer. We also offer activities, games, and nutrition education at our sites throughout the summer. There is no sign-up or registration process and meals are served on a first-come, first-served basis.

2018 Picnic in the Park Schedule 

June 11 – August 10
SITE LOCATION (North County)                                               Lunches Served

Ranch Acres Apartments, 1050 Escalante St., Guadalupe      M- F; 12:40 – 1:40 PM
Riverview Townhomes, 220 Calle Ceasar E. Chavez, Guadalupe  M – F; 1 – 2 PM
College Park Apts., 648 North G St., Lompoc                            M – F; 12 – 1 PM
La Cañada Elementary-YMCA, 621 W. North Ave., Lompoc   M – F; 11:45 AM-12:45 PM
Santa Maria:
Grogan Park, 1155 W. Rancho Verde St., Santa Maria            M – F; 12 – 1 PM
Los Adobes de Maria I, 1026 W. Boone St., Santa Maria        M – F; 12:30 – 1:30 PM
Minami Park, 600 W. Enos Dr., Santa Maria                             M – F; 11 AM – 12 PM
Rice Park, 700 E. Sunset Ave., Santa Maria                             M – F; 11:40 AM – 12:40 PM
**Russell Park, 1000 W. Church St., Santa Maria**             M – F; 11:20 AM – 12:20 PM
NOTE: Due to construction, Russell Park is closed until
June 15. Lunches will begin June 18.
Veterans Memorial, 313 W Tunnell St., Santa Maria               M – F; 12 – 1 PM

June 25 – July 27
SITE LOCATION (Mid County)                                                       Lunches Served
Los Alamos County Park, 500 Drum Canyon Rd.                M – Th 11:20 AM – 12:20 PM

June 11 – August 17 
SITE LOCATION (South County)                                                  Lunches Served
Santa Barbara Public Library, 40 E. Anapamu St.                M – F; 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Isla Vista Apartments, 6660 Abrego Rd., Isla Vista                                 M – F; 1 – 2 PM
St. Vincent Gardens, 4234 Pozzo Circle, Santa Barbara                        M – F; 1 – 2PM

Utilize this Summer Food Directory_Santa Barbara County for a full listing of summer food providers.

Picnic in the Park offers free, healthy meals, fun physical activities and nutrition education  to ensure that summer is fun for all kids in our county. To find a summer lunch site near you, check out our list of sites above or text ‘SUMMERFOOD’ to 877-877 sponsored by Share Our Strength, CAC and local school districts.


Community volunteers and groups manage and support individual park sites, handing out lunches, organizing food literacy training, and summer games. Click here to get involved. For further questions about volunteering, please contact: Spencer vonHershman at (805) (805) 729-8309 for South County sites, or Lori Bailey (805) 722-5251 for North County sites.

Other Summer Food Programs: coming soon