Welcome Fall at East Bay Parks with Ohlone Peoples Gathering, Migrant Bird watching and more

Welcome Fall at East Bay Parks with Ohlone Peoples Gathering, Migrant Bird watching and more

Welcome Fall at East Bay Parks with Ohlone Peoples Gathering, Migrant Bird watching and more
Clockwise from Left: Coyote Hills Regional Park area. The Green Barn Visitor Center at Sunol Regional Wilderness. Crown Beach in Alameda.

SAN FRANCISCO EAST BAY AREA, CA (Sept. 28, 2022) — The land currently within Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont is the ancestral homeland of the Tuibun Ohlone Peoples. Every year the Gathering of Ohlone Peoples is held at the park. In this event Ohlone Peoples from several tribes share information about their culture, history, traditions, and current involvements.

Because of COVID-related concerns, this year’s gathering will be virtual. It will take place from 10 a.m. to noon on Sunday, Oct. 2. The online link to view the event is www.ebparks.org/Gathering-of-Ohlone-Peoples.

The park itself is open to the public as usual. The visitor center explores the ecology while honoring Ohlone Peoples knowledge of natural resources and land management skills. These skills enabled Ohlone Peoples to thrive as the First Peoples who have been here for thousands of years and who are still here today. The center will be open from 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.

Coyote Hills is located at the end of Patterson Ranch Road off Paseo Padre Parkway. There’s a parking fee of $5 per vehicle. For information on the park or the virtual gathering, call 510-544-3220.

Green Barn

Speaking of visitor centers, the Green Barn Visitor Center at Sunol Regional Wilderness has been remodeled extensively in a project funded by the park district and the Regional Parks Foundation.

The center now has new interactive exhibits, animal viewing enclosures, and an information center to help guide visitors to park attractions. Exhibits are bilingual in English and Spanish.

The Sunol Visitor Center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays except Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. It is closed all other days. Entry is free.

And you can find out all about birds during a program at the center from 1 to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 1 with naturalist Kristina Parkison. Learn some bird lore, examine some feathers, and try identifying birds by hearing their calls. The free program is for ages seven and older; parent participation is required. Registration isn’t necessary, just drop by. For information, call 510-544-3243.

Sunol Regional Wilderness is at the end of Geary Road off Calaveras Road about five miles south of I-680 and the town of Sunol. There’s a parking fee of $5 per vehicle.

Migrating birds

Birds are also on the agenda in a program from 9:30 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 1 at Crown Beach in Alameda with naturalist Michael Charnofsky.

Thousands of migrating and wintering shorebirds often flock to San Francisco Bay at this time of year. For a look, join Michael at the Elsie Roemer Bird Sanctuary pier on Shoreline Drive between Broadway and Park Street.

All levels of bird expertise are welcome, and reservations are not necessary. Binoculars will be provided. For information, call 510-544-3187.

Hikes for Tykes

Lake Temescal in Oakland is the venue for one of the naturalist-led Hikes for Tykes strolls, this one from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 4.

It’s free and no registration is required. Meet the naturalist at the park’s north parking area on Broadway near the junction of Highways 13 and 24 for a walk around the lake to look for birds, butterflies and flowers. Bring a snack. For information, call Crab Cove at 510-544-3187.

Hiding in Plain Sight

“Hiding in Plain Sight” is the theme of a program from 11 a.m. to noon on Sunday, Oct. 2 at Big Break Regional Shoreline in Oakley with naturalist Wyatt Moore.

Find out how animals and insects use camouflage to hide from predators, then test your own ability to hide in plain sight.

Meet at the visitor center. The program is free and registration is not necessary. Parent participation is required, though.

You will find the park at 69 Big Break Road off Oakley’s Main Street. For information, call 510-544-2030.

Get Outside Club

The “Let’s Get Outside Club” is a series of naturalist-led moderate walks of two to four hours, for ages eight and older, perfect for beginning hikers. The club will meet the first Sunday of each month; the hikes proceed, rain or shine.

There’s a hike from 9 a.m. to noon on Sunday, Oct. 2 at Del Valle Regional Park south of Livermore, led by naturalist Betty Villalta.

You do not need reservations. To join the group, park in the second lot on the east side of the lake and meet in front of the marina at 9 a.m. Bring water and a snack. Check the weather beforehand a prepare accordingly. All children must be accompanied by an adult, and park district COVID guidelines apply.

For information on the club, call Sunol Wilderness at 510-544-3249.

These columns usually announce events that do not require registration, because the programs could fill before the column appears in the paper. However the park district offers lots of fun activities, some free and some with fees, that do require advance registration. For the full story, visit www.ebparks.org and click on “Things To Do” at the top of the home page.

Ned MacKay writes a regular column about East Bay Regional Park District sites and activities. Email him at nedmackay@comcast.net.