San Mateo PAL Pulse January and February 2024

San Mateo PAL Pulse

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Holiday Recap - Santa Brunch and Santa Cop Was A Holiday Hit!

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We hope you enjoyed a restful and joyful new year and holiday break with your loved ones. December was a busy time for PAL, Santa, Santa's Workshop, and the PAL office as we held our annual Santa Brunch and Santa Cop events. Santa Brunch was open to all PAL members and it was so much fun seeing our PAL-ticipants and their families with their hearts and stomachs full. Huge THANK YOU to Esposto's Catering for generously gifting all of the food, which included hot scrambled eggs, pancakes, sausages and beverages. It was delicious!

We'd also like to thank the Mayer Family for their generous donation that went towards hosting the event. Their generosity led to amazing gifts, activities, and decorations to really bring out the holiday cheer. We'd also like to thank the Toys for Tots organization for donating over 750 gifts to distribute to our PAL kids and local youths from the community. After breakfast, each PAL member got to pick a present and this wouldn't have been possible without the support of Officer Thornburg, the Marines, and Toys for Tots organization.

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Santa Cop is special event where San Mateo Police Officers and PAL staff select several families to receive some extra cheer over the holidays. Santa Cop and his many helpers make visits across the city delivering gifts and joy to the homes of many of our families. This year, Safeway gifted the families with a gift card and we couldn't be more grateful for their support towards our local community. The holidays can be a hard time for some families, but we are lucky to have community partnerships to help us make the local community a brighter place. Thank you so much, Safeway!!

News and Updates

Lights & Sirens - Annual Awards and Recognition Dinner

Lights and Sirens

Our annual Lights & Sirens dinner and awards ceremony is only a few weeks away. Lights & Sirens will be held on March 22, 2024 at the San Mateo County Event Center - Cypress Hall. Lights & Sirens is one of PAL's biggest donor events and is a huge driving force for our success. Donations from this event will go towards programmatic support, youth prevention services, and family services. Sponsorships are available now! Become a sponsor today and secure your spot at our Lights & Sirens gala event. Check out our page for ways you can donate or support!

Giving Tuesday and 2023 Year-End Giving

Thank You

Wow! What a way to end the year. For our Giving Tuesday and Year-end Giving campaigns to closeout 2023, we raised over $30k, including a $10k donation from Bob and Rita DeLue and a $10k match from the Mayer Family Foundation.

We are so grateful for the support and the contributions that make up PAL's successes. These generous donations will go towards supporting our youth programs, family services, and local community events. From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU.

Meet Our Staff

Guadalupe Hernandez

Guadalupe Hermandez

In every newsletter, we will be spotlighting a PAL staff member or volunteer. Without them, our PAL programs would not be as successful as they are.

This month we are spotlighting:

Guadalupe Hernandez, Recreation Specialist

Hello everyone! My name is Guadalupe Hernandez, and I work for PAL as a Recreation Specialist.

A fun fact about myself is that I am currently an Explorer with the San Mateo Police Department, and was recently hired to work for PAL. I started my role with PAL in September 2023 and so far so fun! I truly enjoy working with the community and supporting the youth. Since becoming an Explorer and PAL employee, I have become a better communicator, gained confidence, and have taken on roles and tasks that are usually outside of my comfort zone. I am a high school senior at Aragon High School and will be graduating at the end of the spring semester.

I currently work at PAL’s Place and I lead various craft classes, where I instruct art projects using different techniques. I am bilingual in Spanish so please don't hesitate to reach out if you need anything in either English or Spanish! Looking forward to meeting you at our upcoming PAL events!

Pictured: Guadalupe (left) at our 2022 Santa Brunch event.
Pictured: Guadalupe (left) at our 2022 Santa Brunch event.
Join Us at PAL's Place

PAL's Place Reopens on Sept 5th!

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PAL's Place, at the Shoreview Recreation Center, reopens on Tuesday, September 5th! It's a dedicated space for middle schoolers to visit, hang out, play sports, or do homework in the presence of other PAL members. It's a collaborative space with computers, comfortable chairs, PlayStation, and sports equipment to check out for use in the park.

PAL's Place is open Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 2:00 to 6:00 pm. This awesome place is for PAL members only. Becoming a member is easy, fill out this membership form here. Upon completing your membership form, you can register for the program at any recreation center or on-line using the Activity # 532130.

Feel free to email: or call Laura Sharp at (650) 759-1852 with any questions. Hope to see you there!

Upcoming Events

Junior Giants

Junior Giants - Volunteers Needed!

It's almost time for Junior Giants and that means we will need your help for volunteers and coaches. Stay tuned for more information about volunteering and important registration dates! Click here for more info.



The San Mateo Parks and Recreation Department is egg-cited to announce that the 47th Eggstravaganza event will be held on Saturday, March 30th in Central Park from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.

There will be easter egg hunts, photo opportunities, live entertainment, food trucks and more! More information soon to follow.

Check Out What Are PAL Kids Are Up To!

Cookie Club
Cookie Club
Pumpkin Carving
Pumpkin Carving
Dia de los Muertos 2023
Dia de los Muertos 2023

Enter for a chance to be featured on our social media!

Email us pictures and videos (past or present) of your child participating in PAL programs or activities for a chance to be featured on our social media. You can email all content to:

Follow our Instagram @sanmateopal and
"Like" our Facebook page @SanMateoPAL!!

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