September 2020 eNews
District Responds to Unprecedented Number of Wildfires
On August 16, the Park District was hit by an unprecedented number of lightning strikes, causing wildfires that closed many of our parks. Closing parks is always our last resort when the safety of people, property, or environment cannot be maintained. We know parks are essential for exercise and stress relief, especially now during COVID-19, but we could not risk having visitors in the parks when there were extreme fire safety concerns and unhealthy smoke in the air. 

Additionally, all Park District wildfire-fighting staff and resources were deployed to the recent wildfires, including 38 on-call firefighters who are District employees, including park rangers, trained and available to fight wildfires when needed. 

Our fire crews have been phenomenal in battling the wildfires – two still burning – in high heat and very tough terrain, and with our Eagle 7 helicopter pilots also endlessly dropping water and providing tactically guidance as the “Eye in the Sky” when no other state air resources were available. All parks have since reopened, except those directly impacted by the fires. In the parks that are severely burnt we are clearing trails and making sure parks are safe before reopening. Sadly many heritage oaks were lost, but many burnt areas will recover in just a few years.  

Thank you, firefighters! 

Be safe in your Regional Parks!

Robert E. Doyle
General Manager
Back to School with EBRPD Digital Learning
With many Bay Area schools getting the school year started with distance learning, Park District naturalists are excited to connect students with nature through digital learning and virtual field trips. New videos are added every week to our Digital Learning web page.

Schools and groups can also reach out to individual visitor centers, and there are more resources for teachers on our Educators Page. In the coming weeks, we will be launching our new field trip application system, which will include all of our virtual field trips for schools.
Last Chance to Provide Feedback!
COVID-19 Survey Ends September 8
Parks are essential, now more than ever, as the public looks for respite from COVID-19. However, increased numbers of visitors in parks does create additional challenges. In May, the Park District conducted a scientific phone survey to obtain community feedback about the public’s use of Regional Parks during COVID-19. The Park District is now conducting an online survey to gather additional feedback. We want to hear from you. What are your thoughts? Fill out the survey here.
Enjoy Labor Day Weekend in Your Regional Parks
However some activities are prohibited, including swimming
Labor Day Weekend is typically one of the busiest times of the year for the Park District. This year, due to COVID-19 restrictions, excessive heat, and the anticipation of poor air quality, the Park District is encouraging the public to go early and limit the length of their visit.

Some things will be different this year due to COVID-19 restrictions, including:
  • No picnicking at tables, barbecuing or gatherings (Individual and group picnic areas are closed)
  • No swimming, boating, or camping is allowed (Swim areas, water facilities, and campgrounds are closed)
  • Keeping dogs on-leash (Dogs must be kept on-leash at all times, except at Point Isabel Regional Shoreline)

Additionally, some park facilities remain closed due to COVID-19 and the impacts from recent wildfires. For more information about what parks are open and closed, visit
#RockingTheMaskEBRPD for a Free Bandana
Join us for the #RockingTheMaskEBRPD challenge and win a free EBRPD branded bandana! Here’s how:
1 - Visit a Regional Park
2 - Take a pic/video dancing with your mask on
3 - Upload pic/video at
FINAL CALL 2021 Calendar Photos
Don’t miss the chance for your photos to be featured in next year’s #LoveEBRPD calendar! Our 2021 annual calendar will feature park user photos and comments that express their love of East Bay Regional Parks. Enter Photo Contest
Together #WeAreEBRPD 
Meet Lance H, a Park Ranger at Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park. With so many extra visitors over the past few months, popular parks like Reinhardt Redwood have seen a huge increase in visitation. In the past few months, park rangers and crews have faced an unfortunate combination of increased workload coupled with reduced staffing due to COVID-19 restrictions. Give a shout out to Park Ranger Lance and all Park District staff when you are out in the parks by following all posted rules and throwing trash and dog poop bags into trash receptacles.
Little Known Shoreline Gem Upgraded
Encinal Beach in Alameda will soon break ground on major improvements, including dune restoration, shoreline stabilization, and public access upgrades. The beach is tucked away behind Encinal High School and, along with the City of Alameda boat ramp, provides beach and water access for fishing, kayaking, and other water sports. Encinal Beach is part of the San Francisco Bay Water Trail that provides access to 450-square miles of open water – the Bay Area's largest single open space.

The boat ramp area was recently upgraded separately by the City of Alameda. Encinal Beach is closed for construction until December 2020.

(Photo by Ben Botkin, SF Bay Water Trail)
Two of the most well-loved lakes in our parks, Tilden’s Lake Anza and Lake Temescal, have introduced new technology this summer to combat cyanobacteria, also called blue-green algae. Algal blooms, which may produce toxins, are primarily caused by warmer water and a build-up of nutrient-laden sediment on lakebeds.

Each lake required different systems to be used based on their physical and structural characteristics. Lake Anza’s system delivers pressurized oxygen into pipes along the bottom of the lake to help make it more difficult for cyanobacteria to thrive. The new on-site generators at Lake Temescal use a more experimental approach, employing a nanobubbler to supersaturate the water with microscopic air bubbles which bind to the free-floating particles in the water. The Park District is continuing to monitor these lakes to document the water quality improvements.
Virtual Concert at the Cove 
August 21 was the first-ever virtual Concert in the Cove. The online premiere featured EBRPD Board President Ellen Corbett, Crab Cove naturalists and music by Alpha Rhythm Kings. A good time was had by all!  Watch a replay of the video here. Unfortunately, there will be no additional concerts this year.
Be Water Safe All Year 
Despite this year's swim facility closures due to COVID-19, the Park District’s aquatic staff wants to help educate the public about water safety, which is a year-round concern. Two new videos have been added to the District’s YouTube channel to address water safety and lifejackets, with other water safety videos in the works. 
Clean the Shore from Your Front Door
Coastal Cleanup Month – September 2020
This year's Coastal Cleanup is different than in past years. Due to COVID-19, there will be no organized group activities. Instead, Coastal Cleanup takes place in your own neighborhood throughout the entire month of September. Trash from our neighborhoods travels through storm drains, creeks, and rivers to become beach and shoreline pollution. Help keep beaches clean by cleaning up your local neighborhood streets and creeks! Register for the event and log your volunteer hours to earn a patch. Info & Registration
Tarantulas Are Out and Looking for Love!
September means tarantulas are out and about in eastern Regional Parks. During early fall months, male tarantulas emerge from their burrows in search of an amorous encounter with a female in her burrow. This month there are two events where visitors can safely learn more about tarantulas in the parks. More Info
Connecting Parks to People
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