Berkeley Bay Festival – This Saturday

This Saturday (April 16) is the Berkeley Bay Festival, with lots of fun activities. Free sailboat rides, tidepool walks, live music, dragon-boat rides, hands-on science exhibits in the brand-new nature classroom, dedication ceremony for the Berkeley Meadow, and lots more.

More info:

BPFP will have a table at the event from Noon-4:30pm, near the Shorebird Park Nature Center (on the left just a little before you get to the long pier). We’d love to say hi if you are at the festival, please come by our table. Or if you could come for an hour and join us at the table, that would be great–please reply to me or phone me at 540-7223. If you have any hand-outs that would be interesting, let me know that too.

Charlie Bowen (Ms), Chair
Berkeley Partners for Parks–BPFP

Help find and slow Sudden Oak Death: Apr. 30 – May 1 ‘blitz’ survey

Sudden Oak Death, a fungus-like mold that is ravaging coastal California’s beautiful live oaks, is infecting trees in the hills from El Sobrante to Oakland, and has been found on the UC Berkeley campus and North Berkeley hills.

The disease is carried on many host plants. Its advance is fitful but inexorable, spurred by high winds or late-spring rains. The pathogen affects large oaks; most infected trees die quickly (hence the name). Sometimes, massive infestations of beetles and fungi that follow the disease cause trees to snap off at the base even before the leaves turn brown.

Loss of our coastal oaks means much more than loss of beauty or property values. Hundreds of native animal and plant species depend on oaks. Watershed and water cycling would change. Danger of fire and damage from falling limbs and trees would increase.

There is no cure, but some things can be done to slow the spread and protect high-value or high-risk trees — for example in parks or near homes. Most of these must be done before an area, or a tree, is infected.
Working with UC Berkeley’s Dr. Matteo Garbelotto and other community organizations, BPFP is sponsoring a “blitz” survey of infected host plants – mainly California bay laurels. Sign up here to:

  • Attend a free one-hour training and get survey materials, 1:30 PM Sat., April 30, on the UC Berkeley campus (easy access by BART and bus). Training also is available at 10 AM April 30 at the Orinda Community Center; Bill Hudson at
  • Look for infected leaves at locations of your choice (including young home) or suggested by organizers.
  • Volunteers return suspect samples to an on-campus drop box by 5 PM Sunday, May 1.
  • Samples will be laboratory tested. Results will be posted on an online database and Google Earth. A community meeting will discuss results and what can be done.

    For more information about the survey, or if a group is interested if your group is interested in surveying a specific park or neighborhood, please contact Friends of Five Creeks, or 510 848 8358.

    If you think you have an infected oak on your property, check out the Garbelotto lab’s free treatment-training sessions .

    If the April 30-May 1 blitz doesn’t work for you, but you have an I- phone and want to help add to knowledge of this plague, check out this I-phone app from Maggi Kelly’s lab, also at UC Berkeley.

    For general information on sudden oak death, go to the California Oak Mortality Task Force web site.

    Berkeley Path Wanderers: Earth Day Power Walk

    Contact: Keith Skinner 510 520 3876

    Meeting Place: Berkeley Rose Garden, 1200 Euclid, main entrance near the sign

    Leader: Colleen Neff

    Transit: AC buses #65, #67

    Burn up the paths of the Park Hills neighborhood while celebrating Earth Day. Highlights
    include the Lutheran Seminary and one of BPWA’s newest path projects. This will
    be a fast paced walk for fit and energetic walkers. Well-behaved dogs on leashes permitted.

    Berkeley Path Wanderers: Panoramic Rim of Claremont Canyon Walk

    Contact: Keith Skinner 510 520 3876

    Meeting Place: Intersection of Dwight Way and Panoramic Way, Berkeley, near the Water Tower. 

    Leader: Claremont Canyon Conservancy Board Members

    Transit: AC bus #F

    In conjunction with our April 14 Spring Program, leaders of the CCC will introduce us to the beauty and natural resources of Claremont Canyon. Mostly flat with stops and will last less than two hours.  Limited parking, carpooling suggested.  No dogs, please.

    Berkeley Path Wanderers: 2011 BPWA Spring Meeting

    St. John’s Presbytarian Church, Fireside Room, 2727 College Avenue, Berkeley

    Please join the Berkeley Path Wanderers for its annual Spring meeting for a presentation on the 520-acre Claremont Canyon watershed, and the work of the Claremont Canyon Conservancy to restore and preserve this unique local resource. Steve Glaeser, BPWA’s co-chair of path building, will also report on our recent progress in expanding and improving the path system. The meeting is free and open to the public.