Sonoma Ecology Center’s Enviroleader summer internship program kicked off with a week-long backpacking trip through Sugarloaf and Hood Mountain Regional Park. Seven interns co-led an advanced backpacking camp for youth alongside Team Sugarloaf staff.

The interns were also invited to join the Sonoma Stompers and to educate the ballpark audience during the Sonoma Ecology Center sponsored “Climate Footprint” night. The teens created trivia games and tabling activities to bring awareness to the amount of carbon emissions we all create that add to the effects of global climate change.

In addition to the community and Sugarloaf related activities, the Enviroleaders did their share of work at the Sonoma Garden Park. Harvest is in full season and the students worked on some uniquely cultivated experimental plants including growing fiber from a variety of flax and working with natural dyes like indigo for textiles.

This summer interns came from three high schools: Sonoma Valley High, Hanna Boys Center and Sonoma Academy, and included Gabe Gissell, 15, Maddy Glenn, 17, Lindsey Cullens, 15, Jakob Sparks, 15, Sebastian Rodriguez, 16, Ben Hummel, 16 and Brent Noe, 15.

The crew completed its term on Aug. 3, and the new team will start again this fall. Applications are being accepted now for the next semester which will go from Sept. 12 to Nov. 14. The interns meet on Wednesdays from 3 to 6 p.m. and on Saturdays from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Applications will be accepted until Sept. 4 at For more information contact Tony Passantino at or 996-017, ext. 124