By Laurie Gossy
May 21 was a perfect day to visit Jack London State Historic Park in Sonoma County. Not only was it a beautiful spring day, it was also the second day of Call of the Wild Weekend, with a nature walk for the little ones and wine tasting from Kenwood Vineyards for the adults.
BATW members Karen Misuraca, Yvonne Horn, Morton Beebe, Carol Canter and Laurie Gossy (with Carol and Morton joined by their spouses) enjoyed a leisurely stroll around Jack London’s beloved Beauty Ranch, took in demonstrations of blacksmithing, spinning, and antique steam equipment, met “Jack” himself, and gathered for a picnic lunch in the shade near the historic cottage.
The group was met by Eric Metz, Deputy Director/Director of Operations, who talked about several of the recent and upcoming projects at the park, all involving conservation, preservation and providing the best experience for park visitors, now and into the future. He described the repair, restoration and reopening of the popular Vineyard Trail, which is now complete with stone steps, armored crossings and a wooden boardwalk. A guided hike on the trail to the 2,000-year-old Ancient Redwood is scheduled for June 14.
Some stayed on to see the results of the park’s 7th grade ecology competition entitled “Rewild My School,” where students presented redesigned models of their schoolyards with an eye to increasing biodiversity. Another exciting afternoon event was the presentation of prizes to the winners of the annual Young Writer’s Contest, this year themed “Through the Eyes of Animals.”
All went home with a renewed appreciation of this gem of history and nature, right in the Bay Area’s backyard.