Sonoma County Parks Celebration 2014

Tolay Bay View Sonoma County

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Sonoma County Parks Celebration 2014

On Tuesday, April 22, more than one billion people around the world are expected to celebrate the 44th annual Earth Day.

There will be plenty of Earth Day celebrating here in Sonoma County, too.

One of the big events on the local calendar on April 22 is the start of Sonoma County Regional Parks Celebration 2014. Running through Memorial Day (May 26), the annual Celebration offers dozens of free outdoor adventures for everyone from heavy-duty hikers to families with young children to people with limited abilities. It's a great opportunity to just get out into nature, check out a park you haven't been to before (or try an activity that's new to you), and appreciate the beauty of this vast county.

Just a few great adventures lined up include:

  • April 22: Spread your wings on Earth Day with a Great Blue Heron Walk at Healdsburg's Riverfront Regional Park (it's happening on April 29, too). Located on the Russian River, the park is a rookery for these birds; they're the largest herons in North America, and you might get a chance to see them feeding their young. The flat and easy walk is led by a ranger.
  • April 26: An Earth Day and Dia de Los Ninos celebration at the family-friendly Environmental Discovery Center in Spring Lake Regional Park. Kids can make eco-crafts, go on naturalist-led hikes with their families, enjoy face painting, and indulge in many other fun activities.
  • April 27: The 41st annual Bodega Bay Fisherman's Festival at Westside Regional Park goes all weekend and is jam-packed with food, music, entertainment, artisan crafts, wine tasting and even a golf tournament and a wooden boat challenge. The blessing of the fishing fleet on Sunday morning is the perfect excuse for boat-owners to decorate their crafts and launch a boat parade.
  • May 3: Sandcastle-building and kite flying galore at the annual Castles & Kites event in Bodega Bay's Doran Regional Park. Bring your own kite or just watch amateurs and experts show off their skills (local shops will also be selling kites). If you're up for building sandcastles, you can borrow (for free) tools and molds from Regional Parks. On the other hand, you just might prefer watching long-time sand sculptors at work.
  • May 8: Take a Geology Walk with a ranger at Foothill Regional Park, learning about the area's igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks. This kind of knowledge is useful anywhere you go.
  • May 15: Go for an evening Bike Ride with a Ranger along the popular 5.5-mile West County Trail, which links Sebastopol with Graton and Forestville. You'll stop here and there to discuss the habitat (vineyards, wetlands, ranches, oaks, orchards) and the trail's history (it runs on a former railroad right of way).

There is more—much more!—during Parks Celebration 2014. Learn more by visiting Sonoma County Regional Parks.

Find more info about other Earth Day celebration events in Sonoma County.

Suzie Rodriguez
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