December 17, 2020
Dear Friends,
I hope you are safe. It’s such a hard time right now and even with the vaccine’s arrival, the compounding of suffering is very present. Under COVID19 I find my memories are more vivid. Is the reaching back a yearning for better times or a way to fill empty spots traditions usually occupy? 

Last year at this time I was on a plane to New Orleans en route to visit my dad. This year I’ve packed up a batch of his favorite pralines to send a little sweetness in place of a visit. Safety means distance this year.

Power of New Traditions
Despite the disruption, I’ve created new routines that may firm into traditions. I’ve given up my daily swims (the mid-November chill was the breaking point), but end-of-the day walks from Second to First Valley in Inverness and back around via Tomales Bay give me a chance to connect with the tides and whatever animals are stirring at sunset. I spend a lot of time at my desk and this more regular connection to nature is one of the habits I hope to keep as we roll into 2021. 

Some of the shifts at PRNSA we also hope to hang onto in 2021. It’s been wonderful having two science communications interns this past year (thank you again Maureen Kennedy for the funding!). Please enjoy Jerimiah’s write up about fire in the West. Thanks to our new virtual skills, our webinar series is reaching many thousands more people than we could ever fit in the park’s Red Barn. We are also exploring new territory (check out the gorilla opportunity below), while connecting the science dots between the global and the local. Thanks to the support of so many at Dinner on the Pacific Plate, our Regeneration Fund is already supporting studies of both invasive plant species and the very shy and vulnerable Point Reyes Mountain Beaver.
Matched Constancy
One thing that has stayed constant this year has been the incredible generosity of folks who love Point Reyes National Seashore. We met our first two matches totaling $35,000 and we’ve received another $20,000 gift to help increase our match pool. We are now at $125,000 of our $180,000 goal. If you can help us meet our goal with a gift, please know it will be matched up to $20,000, helping us prepare up for whatever 2021 delivers.

Additionally, in response to the pandemic, Congress enacted through the CARES Act two charitable law provisions to encourage giving. Individuals who do not itemize may donate up to $300 for a charitable gift on their 2020 tax return. For individuals who itemize their deductions, the normal maximum is 60% of adjusted gross income and the CARES Act increases that cap to 100% for individuals in 2020.
Sweet Sound of New Rhythms
Circling back to memories, my son, Buddy and I were talking about what a wonderful time we had in New Orleans last year. One highlight was a beautiful evening listening to jazz pianist Ellis Marsalis. When we learned of his death from COVID19 on April 2nd we just couldn’t believe it. We had been less than six feet from this legend. The power of his music and the loss to the world is what I was thinking about when walking yesterday evening. He inspires me in my piano practice, my newest winter daily habit. Here’s a holiday tune by Mr. Marsalis for your walks at dusk or whatever your chosen winter rhythm, wherever you find yourself. 

Please take good care of yourself and your loved ones this holiday season.
Warmest wishes,
Donna Faure
Executive Director
Fire Series: Part 2 - Why the West Burns
by Jerimiah Oetting, PRNSA Science Communication Intern
This year’s fire season was historic in California. According to Cal Fire, over four million acres had burned as of mid-November. That’s more than double the footprint that made 2018 the previous record holder. The Woodward Fire in Point Reyes National Seashore, at 5,000 acres, was only a small component of that total. But it was driven by the same conditions that fuel the state’s largest fires... click HERE to learn more and to read the recent article by Science Communication Intern, Jerimiah Oetting.
Marin County issued a new Stay at Home order effective December 8 in response to the increasing cases of COVID -19 in the region and state. These new restrictions will remain in place at least until January 4, 2021.

How will these changes affect our park and park visitors?
  • Campgrounds will be closed - this includes Wildcat campground, and all Tomales Bay boat-in sites. Sky, Glen, and Coast campgrounds were already closed due to the Woodward Fire.
  • All other current closures will remain in effect. Please find a link to download a high-resolution PDF version of the park-wide closure map on the NPS website here.
Field Conservation for Mountain Gorillas??
Thursday, January 14, 6pm – 7pm
Free #Park In Place Webinar Series
Yup you read that right, Gorillas. Mountain Gorillas to be exact. No there are no Mountain Gorillas in Point Reyes and there probably never will be. What is connected is the in depth conservation skills and research that has gone on to make incredible change for a sensitive species. Jena Hickey has devoted years to conservation efforts while working in the field and has a lot to share. Come learn more about how change can for the environment can happen at a variety of levels and register for this free webinar today. Register Now!
Due to the new shelter in place order in Marin County, we have elected to cancel all in-person field classes at this time in support of public health efforts. Although outdoor classes are not strictly forbidden, gathering with people outside of your household, even outdoors, and even with precautions is strongly discouraged. We look forward to seeing you online, or in-person after the new year!
Select class title for more information on these and other upcoming classes.
Friday, January 8, 10:30am – 5pm *New Date*
Saturday, January 9, 10am – 2pm
Saturday, January 16, 10:30am – 5pm
Saturday, January 23, 10am – 4pm
Sunday, January 24, 9am – 4pm
A Five-Part Series: Tuesdays, January 26 – February 16, - 7pm – 9pm
Saturday, January 30, 10am – 2pm
Sunday, January 31, 10am – 4:30pm
NEW University of California Extension Certification Program
Help your community find resilience in a changing climate...become a certified Climate Steward!

UC Climate Stewards Program at Point Reyes
February 23 – April 20, Tuesdays, 6:30pm-9pm, online classes
3 Saturdays, 9:30am – 3:30pm, in person at locations in and around Point Reyes
Climate Stewards is an exciting new initiative from the University of California Cooperative Extension in partnership with the Point Reyes National Seashore Association. In this program you will learn more about the science of climate change, how to communicate more effectively about this issue, and how to help your community adapt to climate challenges.
As a Certified Climate Steward you will become part of a statewide network working to promote community and ecosystem resilience for California's future. To learn more about this initiative, visit UCANR's Climate Stewards page. For more information or to register for the certification course, click here.
Give the gift of education to someone you love!

Looking for a holiday gift? Would you like to gift someone with an experience that connects them to the natural world? Field Institute gift certificates are valid for any Field Institute one-day land-based class. All classes occur in and around the Point Reyes
National Seashore. More Info
Thanks to those of you who have joined our High Tide Monthly Supporter program. Your monthly donations help sustain our conservation and environmental education programs, and allow us to bring more faces out to the Seashore. Donate this month and sign up to join our rising tide! Become a High Tide Monthly Supporter today. It is the easiest, and greenest way to show your love for the park!
We partner with the National Park Service to create opportunities for all people to experience, enhance, and preserve Point Reyes National Seashore for present and future generations.
Point Reyes National Seashore | (415) 663-1200 x 310 | [email protected] |