Outdoor writers are not born to the job. They are made often through experience gained as students writing about California outdoor activities. Some get that experience while writing and photographing for student publications or working as interns at local newspapers. Many are impeded from successful work by a lack of funds to travel to destinations or shortage of opportunities to learn from other outdoor writers.

Help future outdoor writers learn their craft by making a tax-deductible donation to the Pat Vachini Scholarship Fund. The program, which is managed by OWAC, makes annual financial awards to winners of this annual outdoor writing and photography contest for high-school students. The grants help recipients attend OWAC conferences, meet other outdoor writers, and learn skills that lead to published stories.

Long-time supporter and outdoor writer Don Vachini kicked off the program in 2020 with a $4,000 donation to OWAC as a memorial to his late wife, Pat, an amount matched by OWAC members. Your new contribution will provide a dollar-for-dollar match for Don’s recent $1,000 donation and result in $2,000 to expand the Pat Vachini Outdoor Scholarship Program to include additional high schools.

Don hopes that the scholarship will assure that Pat’s “caring nature, radiant smile, and loving heart will be forever etched in OWAC annals.”

OWAC’s Board of Directors picks the recipients, who will be awarded funds to support projects that help build their portfolio of outdoor stories and photographs.

Download, print and complete this form and mail it with your check to address listed on the form.

Or, click here to donate via PayPal.

Thank you!

Pat Vachini
Share this story
Picture of Peter Schroeder

Peter Schroeder


Follow us on
Follow us on

2023 Excellence in Craft Awards

EIC 2023

2023 Student Awards

Students 2023

Not yet a member?

Read about membership benefits.
Learn how we work together to educate and encourage people to enjoy the outdoors.

Subscribe to OWAC Outdoors

OWAC's bi-monthly newsletter

Members Only

Submit a Post.

OWAC Facebook Feed

Scroll to Top

Subscribe to our bi-monthly newsletter for the latest outdoor news. 

Write to us