Friends of Willow Creek will be hosting the fourth annual Earth Day Willow Creek Community Cleanup and Native Plant Restoration on Saturday, April 26th, from 9:00 am to 12:30pm. Each year, Friends of the Creek volunteers invite community members and families to join this annual event dedicated to clearing invasives and planting natives.
Willow Creek is part of a growing network of restoration efforts in Marin County led by volunteers dedicated to restoring and enhancing our natural resources and raising awareness of the importance of maintaining clean water and healthy watersheds to support and enhance the wellbeing of the communities they serve. In Sausalito, Willow Creek provides a unique opportunity to restore, enhance, and maintain a vital asset for education and scenic enjoyment for generations to come.
This year Friends of the Creek is extending a special invitation to families with children attending school or pre-school in Sausalito. Sausalito is now home to five schools and pre-schools including Willow Creek Academy, Le Lycée, The New Village School, Sparrow Creek Montessori School and the Sausalito Nursery School. Willow Creek Academy (WCA) was the first school in Sausalito to integrate the Creek into their school-day across all disciplines including math, language arts and environmental education and WCA has played a key role in creek restorations to date. Friends of the Creek welcomes the opportunity to bring the benefits of creek stewardship to others.
Willow Grove is located at the corner of Nevada and Bridgeway where the creek flows above-ground for a few hundred feet.The community has responded positively to the sustained success of these efforts and are eager to expand these effort this Spring.
The Earth Day cleanup event takes place at Willow Creek on Saturday April 26th, from 9am to 12:30pm.
Friends of Willow Creek is a 501c non-profit set up to assists the community of Sausalito in making improvements to the perennial Willow Creek watercourse to realize its full potential as a natural stream with flowing water year-round from its headwaters in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area to its mouth at Richardson’s Bay, by restoring, enhancing, and maintaining a community asset for education and scenic enjoyment for generations to come
Did you know that throughout this historic drought in California, the lowest rainfall in recorded history (about 150 years), our neighborhood Willow Creek has continued to flow year round?
Q: How can this little creek flow year-round, when there was almost no rain between January 2013 and February 2014? Where does this water come from?
A: The water in Willow Creek comes from condensation of the marine fog layer on the crest of the ridge above Sausalito. The dew collects on the leaves and the ground and slowly seeps through the ground to the creek. Since the ocean-based fog layer exists throughout the year including all summer long, it provides this year-round water source that gives us the gift of water flow every day of the year.
Q: Has anyone ever invented a way to capture fog condensation to create water supply, especially in drought-stricken and dry countries near the ocean?
A: YES. One company copied the Namid desert beetle’s ability to collect water in the desert (from South West Africa) to design a fence to collect fog condensation: http://www.wunderground.com/news/biomimicry-eight-ways-weve-copied-nature-and-gained-it-20140205?pageno=5 .
In the Atacama Desert in Chile, an MIT researcher is setting up fences to create water supply in the driest desert on earth: http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2013/how-to-get-fresh-water-out-of-thin-air-0830.html
Maybe someday we’ll build fences in California to get water from fog! The reason why we haven’t so far is because it takes a lot of fence (and a lot of money) to make enough water for how many people live here. But as we’ve learned this year, we need to be creative and conservative with our precious water, because we can’t live without it!
Please save the date to celebrate our 4th Annual Earth Day cleanup and planting!
When: Saturday April 26, 9am to 12:30pm
Where: Willow Grove at Nevada and Bridgeway, Sausalito
How: Work with neighbors and naturalists to identify and remove nonnative blackberry, fennel, ivy, hemlock, and broom plants that crowd out natives and open space by the creek. Also plant some native plants from our school’s hoop house that were donated by Marin Headlands Native Plant Nursery.
Why: To create outdoor learning space for K-8 students (especially from Willow Creek Academy), and natural open space for neighbors to enjoy. To demonstrate the benefits of bringing back creek resources in cities.
See you on Earth Day 2014!
Steve Moore, Friends of the Creek
Willow Creek Academy Parent Volunteer