Temescal Creek and the Greenbelt at Year's End

Friday, December 12, 2014

Thinking back over the important achievements of the DMV Neighbors Association in 2014, the most vital accomplishment was to bring together residents to become neighbors, neighbors to become friends, and diverse people from multiple generations to care for and benefit from our portion of Temescal Creek.

A cooperative effort between the DMV association and FROG (Friends of the Rockridge-Temescal Greenbelt) led to Temescal Creek, FROG Park, and the Rockridge Temescal Greenbelt earning Featured Site status for Earth Day 2014, inspiring more volunteers and attracting more resources to our neighborhood gem. Creek to Bay Day and the FROG Fall Maintenance are separate activities, but because they both happened on the same Saturday in 2014, the DMV Neighbors and FROG could share planning, tools, and volunteer efforts, with excellent results for both Big and Little Frog parks, and the creek.

Turnout for events is a decent proxy for interest and support, and lots of people came out in 2014. More important than numbers is who turns out: * Oakland Tech's Build On and Key clubs - high school students voluntarily rolling out of bed early in the morning every First Saturday event to care for Big FROG and the creek; * elementary school kids, and their teachers and parent chaperones, arriving on a September Saturday for Creek-to-Bay Day, during one of the busiest months of the school year; * Cub Scouts who came with parents on busy Saturdays for Earth and Creek-to-Bay Days; * neighbors who love the creek and new neighbors who hadn't learned about it yet, showing up to volunteer and connecting with each other.

Also to be included are the merchants who donate coffee, printing services, plants, snacks, drinks, ice, and window space for posters. There are the children who wade, toss pebbles, sail leaf boats, splash their siblings, and learn the pleasures of wild places and moving water that will stay with them forever. There are the friends who've moved away, but remain on neighborhood email lists to keep up with a place that will always be home. Temescal Creek and the Rockridge-Temescal Greenbelt can claim no finer achievements.

Moving forward into 2015, if you enjoy the creek, want to catch up with some of your neighbors, and stretch your weeding, raking, and pruning muscles, join the DMV Neighbors Association on January 24, 2015, from 9 a.m. to 11a.m. Meet at the corner of Redondo and Cavour by the big eucalyptus; hot coffee and snacks provided. Rain cancels.