From our blogs

Fremont Coastal Cleanup Day Needs Volunteers To Run the Event • September 20, 2014

Come volunteer as an organizer for the Coastal Cleanup Day at the Dumbarton Fishing Pier Parking Lot, Marshlands Rd, Fremont on Saturday, September 20, 2014. Organized by the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., the event is expected to draw a hundred odd participants who will remove invasive weeds or pick up trash along the parking lot and trails.

You can volunteer in any of the following ways:

  • Set up the tents and tables at around 8 am on Saturday September 20.
  • Hand out registration forms at the registration table and accept filled-out forms.
  • Direct participants at the assignment (and safety message) table.
  • Hand out gloves and trash bags to participants at the equipment table.
  • Ride shuttles along the Shoreline Trail with our truck drivers to pick up trash bags, hand out water, or take people back from farther areas.
  • Help participants identify and remove the targeted invasive plants in the weed removal project.
  • Troubleshoot, solve problems, give out information about the refuge, and assist where needed.
  • Take everything down at the end of the event around noon

To volunteer or ask a question please contact Paul Mueller, Volunteer Coordinator, San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge Complex. Email or call at 510-792-0222, ext. 361.

Bay Area artist Donald Neff paints Drawbridge in plein air

Drawbridge has been on my list from almost the start of this quest [to do one painting each week throughout the year 2014 of the Creeks and Rivers of Silicon Valley]. I painted it from across Coyote Slough. How great it was to be way out in the marshlands with only the sounds of the tide going out and an occasional waterfowl winging by! I probably spent as much time just sitting there soaking the environment as painting. ~Donald Neff
Oil painting of Drawbridge, California by Donald Neff

Oil painting of Drawbridge, California by Donald Neff. Photo courtesy Donald Neff. Copyright Donald Neff.

Donald Neff, a Bay Area resident and self-taught painter, took a tour of the ghost town of Drawbridge, CA on Saturday August 23, 2014 with Ceal Craig, long time volunteer at the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge, and also member of the San Francisco Bay Wildlife Society. Donald's description of how he painted a forgotten part of the Bay Area is recounted on his blog.

President declares September 2014 as National Wilderness Month

(via The White House, Office of the Press Secretary)


Visions of the Wild Festival • September 3-6, 2014

To celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act, the Visions of the Wild Festival will be held in Vallejo, CA from September 3-6, 2014.

It will include art shows, speakers, films, music, and field trips. The goal is to connect diverse urban communities to the wildness of nature around them.

September 3-6, 2014 Starting at 5pm

Vallejo, CA

The festival is sponsored by the U.S.D.A Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, City of Vallejo, the Vallejo Community Arts Foundation, and many other agencies and organizations.

Environmental Education Internship


The Environmental Education volunteer internship is located at the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge Environmental Education Center in Alviso, CA. The Environmental Education Center provides free programs to schools and the public, while teaching about the local wildlife, conservation, and how to help the environment. The Living Wetlands program is designed to teach about wetlands and the properties of wetlands including watersheds and water conservation. We need a highly motivated individual who has an interest in education and visitor services and will assist in educating, planning, and developing the Living Wetlands program.

The Amazing Refuge Race • August 23, 2014

Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge and REI Outdoor School present The Amazing Refuge Race August 23, 2014 • 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Armed with GPS units, you and your team will “race” against other teams by attempting to complete required challenges on the refuge first. Teams will be given a set of coordinates where they must try to locate using a GPS unit. Once at that location, teams must work together to complete a challenge. When that task is completed, teams will receive the next set of coordinates. Those who complete all challenges and arrive at the finish first wins!

Intrigued? Log on to or call Carmen at 510-792-0222 ext. 476 for additional information and rules. Don’t have a GPS unit? Borrow one from REI Outdoor School the day of the race at the refuge. Registration is required!

You may register up to 5 people for your team. A minimum of 2 people per team. The refuge may place individuals on teams containing fewer than 5 people to ensure maximum participation. Registration deadline is August 20. Go to or call 510-792-0222 ext. 476 to register. There is no cost to enter.

Wilderness at 50: A Remarkable Concept

(via Refuge Friends NewsWire)

Conservationists around the world are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act of 1964. The law represents a half-century-long struggle that began with people like John Muir and culminated with people like Olaus Murie and Howard Zahniser.

2014 Marsh-In Summer Day Camp • August 4 - 8, 2014

A FREE summer camp filled with fun activities, games, crafts, and adventures.

Date and Time
  • August 4 - 8, 2014
  • Grades 1-6: Monday - Wednesday 9:15 - 1:30 p.m.
  • Grades 4-6 only: Overnight 6:00 p.m. Thursday - 9:00 a.m. Friday

Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge
Environmental Education Center
1751 Grand Blvd, Alviso, CA 95002

National Fishing & Boating Week • June 1 - 8, 2014

National Fishing & Boating Week - June 1 - 8, 2014

Learn how to fish on the Dumbarton Fishing Pier in Fremont!

Saturday, June 7, 2014 9:00 a.m. – noon

Have you ever wanted to try fishing but didn’t know how to begin? Learn the fundamental basics of catch-and- release fishing at the Dumbarton fishing pier! Discover the types of wildlife living in the San Francisco Bay, learn the safety and ethics of fishing, and then try your luck out on the pier with our fishing poles.

This event is free! Space is limited to 50 people. All equipment will be provided. Please come on time. Register at or call 510-792-0222 ext. 476 for reservations.

Farallon National Wildlife Refuge celebrates 50 years of the Wilderness Act

Farallon Islands

Farallon Islands. Photo courtesy Wikipedia. Copyright CC-BY-NA 3.0

Take a boat tour this summer with refuge staff and view California's Galapagos. Farallon National Wildlife Refuge, Oceanic Society and San Francisco Whale Tours have teamed up to offer discounted boat tours of the Farallon Islands to view their rugged beauty, breeding seabirds, seals, and sea lions, and perhaps some whales. Each tour will feature narration by Farallon National Wildlife Refuge staff from the islands, the wilderness, and the abundant wildlife. Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, and help us commemorate the 40th anniversary of Farallon Islands' designation as wilderness. Cost $65 per person.* Hurry, discounted tickets are limited!