Berkeley Path Wanderers’ Charlie Bowen named Cox Conserves Hero

Charlie Bowen, head of Berkeley Path Wanderers’ path-building work, has been named 2012’s Cox Conserves Hero! Berkeley Path Wanderers’ Association, through fiscal sponsor Berkeley Partners for Parks, will receive $10,000!

“This was a real community effort,” Charlie said. “Many people were part of it.” The money, she promised, will go to good use improving more paths “for the use and enjoyment of all” — a phrase from BPWA’s mission statement that she said inspires here even when she gets tired of the work.

The Cox Conserves Heroes Award is a joint project of the Trust for Public Land and KTVU_TV (Channel 2). A panel selects finalists, and the winner is chosen by an online vote.

Scroll down for more on Charlie’s work. Congratulations, Charlie!

Help Path Wanderers and BPFP win $10,000; honor Charlie Bowen

Charlie Bowen directing volunteer path builders
Charlie Bowen (lower right) directs path-building volunteers
Berkeley Path Wanderers’ Association path-building head Charlie Bowen is one of three finalists in the 2012 Bay Area Cox Conserves Heroes contest, sponsored by the Trust for Public Land and KTVI Channel 2.

The one that gets the most on-line votes by Sept. 24 will get $10,000 for their chosen nonprofit. Please click here to see short videos on the finalists and vote!

For 10 years, Charlie has worked tirelessly to restore and expand Berkeley’s historic network of public pathways. More than 20 Berkeley paths, formerly overgrown or fenced off, are now open — and with Charlie’s guidance volunteers in four other cities are pursuing similar efforts. Re-opening these beautiful paths and steps, many wooded and with beautiful views, also helps create a heathy, environmentally friendly, walkable city.

Besides enlisting literally thousands of volunteers for what is often heavy pick-and-shovel work, Charlie has planned carefully, recruited surveyors and contractors, and worked positively and respectfully with the city and with neighbors. Many initial skeptics have become enthusiastic supporters.

The runner up will receive $2500 for their nonprofit of choice. The online vote decides which group gets an additional $7,500. Berkeley Path Wanderers, a partner group of Berkeley Partners for Parks, needs funds to pay for handrails that make steeper paths safer, especially for senior citizens.

Rose Garden 75th Anniversary Celebration Sept. 23

Berkeley Rose GardenThe City of Berkeley and Berkeley Partners for Parks invite everyone to a glorious day celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the Berkeley Rose Garden, Sunday, September 23, 2012 from 11:30 am – 2:30 pm. Tours, advice on roses, garden expo, music including the Berkeley High School Jazz Ensemble, dance, great food, Navarro Vineyards wine garden (21 and over). For kids of all ages, juggling, games, face-painting, and balloon animals.

Before the festival, at 10 AM, Berkeley Path Wanderers lead a walk exploring the garden and its area; meet at the Rose Garden entrance, Euclid between Eunice and Bay View Place (information: walks@berkeleypaths.org).

BPFP partners again funded by UC Chancellor’s Community Partnership Grants

Hands-on volunteer work by Berkeley Partners for Parks member groups has again been funded by the Chancellor’s Community Partnership Grant fund. The fund, set up by UC Berkeley in settlement of a lawsuit, funds nonprofits that partner with UC Berkeley students, faculty, and staff to benefit the Berkeley area.

BPFP groups who will share $4000 include Aquatic Park EGRET, Berkeley Path Wanderers Assn., East Bay Green Parks Assn., Friends of Five Creeks, Schoolhouse Creek Common, and Westbrae Commons. Operating as the Greening Berkeley Hands on coalition, these groups host thousands of UC students volunteers at their work parties. They have received a grant every year since 2006, when the Chancellor’s Grant project began.

BPFP also will serve as fiscal sponsor for funding for the Berkeley Project, which brings thousands of UC students into the community to volunteer on specific days.