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Ecology Center leads hike of Van Hoosear

THE SONOMA ECOLOGY CENTER will lead a hike through the Van Hoosear Wildflower Preserve, which offers spectacular sites of nature.

THE SONOMA ECOLOGY CENTER will lead a hike through the Van Hoosear Wildflower Preserve, which offers spectacular sites of nature.

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The public is invited to attend “As Evening Falls: Twilight Outing and Picnic at Van Hoosear Wildflower Preserve” on Saturday, Oct. 19, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Sonoma Ecology Center biologist Caitlin Cornwall will guide an evening walk through rolling hills, with extraordinary views of bucolic Sonoma Valley. Participants will learn about historical ecology, and look for birds and animals that often come out as the day is ending.

“It’s a special time to be at the preserve – or in nature anywhere – while the bright day transitions into a blue-tinged evening. Some plants curl up for the night, swallows give way to bats, you notice the sounds around you more,” said Cornwall of the preserve in the evening hours. Participants are encouraged to pack a picnic dinner as the outing includes a meal break along the way.

Van Hoosear Wildflower Preserve is a 162-acre protected property at the base of Sonoma Mountain, renowned for its abundance and variety of spring wildflowers. It is protected as open space forever by a conservation easement, made possible by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District, and California’s Wildlife Conservation Board.

The Sonoma Ecology Center manages the preserve with the landowner, protecting and restoring the botanical, aquatic and wildlife aspects of this unique natural treasure, while providing educational opportunities for the public.

This outing is a beginning to intermediate level hike. There are relatively defined trails, with some uneven footing at times. There is no charge for this outing, which is made possible by the voters of Sonoma County who fund the district’s work with a quarter cent sales tax.

Registrations are required online by visiting sonomaecologycenter.org no later than 5 p.m. today, Friday, Oct. 18. For additional information or questions about the outing, contact Jessica Glatt at 996-0712, ext. 110, or jessica@sonomaecologycenter.org.

The Sonoma Ecology Center, a nonprofit organization established in 1990 to sustain and enhance ecological health through community-supported research, restoration and education. The center’s programs and initiatives increase appreciation and stewardship of Sonoma’s natural heritage and create measurable benefits in the areas of water resources, biodiversity, energy and land use.