MAY  |  JUNE 2015   


In This Issue (Links)
Upcoming Events
For locations, see event calendar

 Mushrooms in the Garden
Debbie Viess
Wed., May 20
7-9 p.m.
Dimond Branch Library



Beaconsfield Canyon

Sat., May 30, June 27  

9 a.m.-noon


Bridgeview Trail

Sun., May 10, June 14

10 a.m.-noon


Bridgeview Trailhead Native Bee Garden 

Sun., May 17, June 21

10 a.m.-noon


Marj Saunders Park

Mon., May 11, June 1 

11 a.m.-1 p.m. 


Montclair Railroad Trail

Sat., May 16, June 20 

9-11 a.m.


Wood Park

Sat., May 16, June 20 

10 a.m.-noon





Dimond Park

Sun., May 24

10 a.m.-2 p.m.


Location TBD

Sun., June 28

10 a.m.-2 p.m.




Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve

Fri., May 22

10 a.m.-noon 




Location TBD

 (see event calendar

Fri., June 12, Thurs., June 25

10 a.m.-noon




FOSC Native Plant Nursery

Joaquin Miller Park 


 Sat., May 9 & 23,

June 13 & 27 

1:30-4:30 p.m.




Wed., Jun\e 10

7-9 p.m.

Park Blvd. Presbyterian Church



For more information:

Event Calendar 


Michelle Krieg 

Restoration & Nursery Manager

(510) 325-9006


Kimra McAfee 

Executive Director

(510) 501-3672


FOSC logo

Help FOSC Win $3,000 on Tuesday, May 5!


Instead of our usual appeal for support this time of year, Friends of Sausal Creek is participating in a unique, one-day "fund-a-thon" called East Bay Gives 2015, sponsored by the East Bay Community Foundation. Each hour on that day, cash prizes will be awarded to nonprofits meeting certain donation criteria. From 4-5 p.m. is the Environmental Hour, during which the environmental organization with the most individual donors will win $3,000. What a way to leverage your donation to FOSC! The minimum donation is only $20, but we hope you'll be generous as you have been in the past to support our great work.

All you have to do is visit our website,, on Tuesday, May 5 and click on the East Bay Gives button. An online donation form will appear. If you can't donate between 4 and 5 p.m., an online donation any time that day will help. Check out these highlights from the prize list if you want to try to leverage other cash prizes for FOSC.

This is important: If you haven't already, please Like Us on Facebook and Follow Us on Twitter and Instagram. This campaign is social media driven, and it has the potential to significantly expand our donor base. But we need FOSCers to help us amplify.
And if you cannot give online on May 5, mid-year donation checks are still very much appreciated; you can use the donation coupon at the bottom of this newsletter.


Remember, your donations are what keep FOSC alive and thriving by supporting our small staff who facilitate watershed-wide volunteerism. The Earth Day workday on April 18 showcased what FOSC is and does: 13 sites, 40 crew leaders, 260 volunteers, one dumpster plus 31 bags of trash, and 45 cubic yards of invasive, nonnative plant material. 

One watershed. Thank you!

Madcap Mushroom Meeting 


Mushrooms in the Garden 

Wednesday, May 20, 7 p.m.

Dimond Branch Library, 3565 Fruitvale Ave.

Join local naturalist and mycologist Debbie Viess, co-founder of the Bay Area Mycological Society, for a fun talk on local mushrooms that sprout in our Bay Area woods, lawns, and even gardens. Beautiful photos, stories, and plenty of nontoxic, easy-to-digest science. Download a flyer.

Teens: No Excuse for Boredom in July!
High School Summer Internship Program
July 1-31

Wednesdays and Fridays, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

If you love the outdoors and want to learn to help your local environment, please apply for our 2015 Summer High School Internship Program. See details here. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, with priority given to early applicants.

Friends of the Month:
Mike and Laura Doyle 
The legend of Mike the Hatchet goes back a decade. That is when old timers recall him appearing on the scene--sleeveless shirt, goggles, and headphones, with his handy axe and great grin. Persistence is his game: Hack the acacia or eucalyptus resprouts until they stop coming back. And we can't praise the man without lauding his wife, Laura, accomplice to his field work. His early acacia missions were especially critical as the light seed pods would blow into the FOSC nursery growing areas.

At Beaconsfield Canyon, Mike is a trailblazer, helping to figure out where new trails should go and then wielding shovel and mattock to incise them into the slopes. He's a man of many talents--weed pulling, plant identifying, stump girdling and wrapping, sprout cutting, you name it.

The invasive trees are quaking in the wake of Mike's determination and persistence. He's not just on solo missions, he's leading crews to tackle some of the toughest invasive plants--tarping cotoneaster and hacking more acacia--with verve and a great sense of humor. Thank you, Team Doyle!
New Volunteer Opportunity
Monthly Trail Maintenance Workdays

We are excited to announce the start of monthly trail maintenance workdays! With your help, we can address hydrology and erosion issues and improve habitat in areas adjacent to trails, like the dedicated FOSCer in this photo. Join FOSC Board Member Dee Rosario for the first workday on Sunday, May 24, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. We welcome all levels of volunteers--from those with no trail maintenance experience (opportunities to learn) to seasoned volunteers (opportunities to lead). See the event calendar for details.

FOSC is Hiring
We are seeking an education specialist and an education assistant to assist with our summer environmental education programming. Both positions involve working intensively with our volunteer summer high school interns. The education specialist will also lead habitat restoration projects for Oakland Parks and Recreation campers in Joaquin Miller Park. Job descriptions and information on applying can be found here. Please help us spread the word! 
Explore the Watershed
Our Little Friend is Back 

Common name: Allen's hummingbird 

Scientific name: Selasphorus sasin 

The Allen's hummingbird is an early breeder, arriving from southern climes while there is still a nip in the air. It arrives in time to steal a winter sip of nectar from the rain-fresh blossoms of the manzanita. Favoring California blackberry, the female weaves a silken nest of spider webs festooned with a crazy quilt of lichen into which she lays two pea-sized eggs. She sits tight on them as seen in this photo of our Mrs. Allen, who has returned for a third year to the blackberry tangles along the El Centro Trail in Dimond Creek. By August she and her brood will hightail it back to Mexico to await the winter blossoms again. Can we count on a fourth year from this tiny migrant?

Thank You Helen Dickson, Intern Extraordinaire

We are so grateful to have had Helen Dickson as our intern for the last eight months. In addition to helping our large, community volunteer events run smoothly (Creek to Bay Day, Solstice Planting Day, and Earth Day), Helen has assisted with and solo-led field trips, pitched in on nursery maintenance, laid out this newsletter, and jumped in on assorted and sundry tasks with a cheerful willingness to help. Above all, we are grateful to her for lending her expertise to sort through FOSC's water quality monitoring data, prepare a digestible presentation of it for our website, and advise on the future trajectory of this citizen science effort.


Thank you, Helen, for being part of our team. We will miss you! 

Kudos Korner

Thank you to Eagle Scout candidate Renzo Downey for building and installing two picture posts at FOSC's Fern Ravine restoration area. Picture posts are a citizen science project out of the University of New Hampshire that allows us to document the changes happening at the site thanks to volunteer efforts. Next time you visit Joaquin Miller Park near Sequoia Arena, please take a few pictures and contribute to the ongoing monitoring efforts.
Mosaic artists Karen Difrummolo and Ken Solomon outdid themselves with the trash can mosaic at the El Centro trailhead. It is so cool to have a Townsend's warbler and rainbow trout greeting hikers. (This was a project that Intern Helen Dickson coordinated after meeting Karen at a tabling event.)  
We so appreciated the Earth Day refreshments provided by La Farine-Dimond, Noah's Bagels on Lakeshore and in Montclair, and Peet's Coffee & Tea-Dimond for Dimond Park and Canyon volunteers.


We are also grateful to the Palo Alto Patagonia store for donating a variety of fantastic field wear. We are now equipped to outfit students and other volunteers for any project whatever the weather may bring!

To subscribe to this e-newsletter, email
or call (510) 501-3672.

Please help us maintain and expand our efforts in the Sausal Creek Watershed by making a donation today!

Donate online on May 5 for East Bay Gives or via PayPal or Network for Good, or mail this form with your check made payable to:
Friends of Sausal Creek, P.O. Box 2737, Oakland, CA 94602
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