. Banner Image by Gary Hundt

Community Events 2019


August | September | October | November| December

Click here to review our cancellation policy

The Laguna Foundation is proud to collaborate with local biologists, artists, educators, herbalists, naturalists, and partner organizations to offer a wide range of natural and cultural history workshops, walks, presentations, and classes all year long. Whether you’d like to learn a new skill, enjoy the beautiful Laguna scenery, or attend a fun event with your family, the Laguna Foundation has a variety of offerings to deepen your appreciation for the Laguna de Santa Rosa, connect with nature, and inspire a vibrant community dedicated to lifelong learning.

PLEASE NOTE:
  • Events take place at, or start from, the Laguna Environmental Center, 900 Sanford Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95401, unless otherwise noted.
  • Most events require a registration fee. These fees cover the cost of our instructors' time, workshop materials, and directly support the Community Education program and the work of the Laguna Foundation.
  • All events require pre-registration to secure your place, unless noted otherwise. To register for an event, click on the “Register Now” button below or call our office at (707) 527-9277 xt 110.
  • We frequently post new events, so check our website again soon!

August



The State of Water: Understanding California’s Most Precious Resource
Presentation and book-signing by Obi Kaufmann
Thursday, August 29, 6:30pm - 8:30pm
$14 (non-refundable). Pre-registration required.

Obi Kaufmann’s lively presentation about how science and art can work together to deliver a powerful message of hope comes as an antidote to the miasma of despair that seems to pervade most popular discourse regarding the natural world of California and beyond. In the newly released State of Water, a follow-up to his best-selling book The California Field Atlas, Kaufmann turns his artful yet analytical attention to the Golden State’s single most complex and controversial resource: water. Interspersed throughout with trail paintings of animals that might survive under a caring and careful water ethic, Kaufmann shows how California can usher in a new era of responsible water conservation, and – perhaps most importantly – how we may do so together. Join us in beautiful Heron Hall for a dive into a unique exploration of water, the resource that supports life as we know it and from which the Laguna Foundation bases all of its conservation, education, and restoration efforts.

Growing up in the East Bay as the son of an astrophysicist and a psychologist, Obi Kaufmann spent most of high school practicing calculus and breaking away on weekends to scramble around Mount Diablo and map its creeks, oak forests, and sage mazes. Into adulthood, he would regularly journey into the mountains, spending more summer nights without a roof than with one. For Kaufmann, the epic narrative of the California backcountry holds enough art, science, mythology, and language for a hundred field atlases to come. When he is not backpacking, you can find the painter-poet at his desk in Oakland, posting @coyotethunder #trailpaintings on social media. His website is www.coyoteandthunder.com.



Coiled Willow Basket
Workshop with Charlie Kennard
Saturday, August 31, 9:30am - 3:30pm
$100. Pre-registration required.
This workshop is sold out, but you are welcome to join the waitlist.

Enjoy a respite from the summer heat and spend a Saturday working with your hands while taking in the view overlooking the Laguna de Santa Rosa from Heron Hall. This day-long workshop on the immersive and challenging art of basket-making will use willow, a common riparian tree found across Sonoma County, to shape a small coiled basket. Local weaving expert Charlie Kennard will demonstrate how to split and trim willow to prepare weavers, and then participants will begin a Paiute-style trinket basket, with a foundation of whole willow.

This workshop is suitable for adults and teenagers. All basket-making materials are included in the registration fee. Participants must bring a water bowl, sharp pocket knife, and lunch. Hot drinks and snacks are provided throughout the day.

Charlie Kennard of San Anselmo is a long-time basket weaver and student of California Indian and other traditional basketry techniques of the world. He teaches throughout the Bay Area, and in many schools and at teacher trainings. Tule boats made in his workshops can be seen at the California Academy of Sciences, the Bay Model in Sausalito, and in the collection of the Lake County Museum. You can also visit a basketry plant garden Charlie has created at the Marin Art and Garden Center in Ross, where he and friends have woven a basket 13 feet across. Charlie is active in native habitat restoration in Marin, managing several projects for Friends of Corte Madera Creek Watershed.


[ top ]

 

September




Painting Oak Branches and Galls in Gouache
Workshop with Lucy Martin
Saturday, September 7, 10:00am - 3:00pm
$95. Pre-registration required.

Oak galls, an apple-like deformity on oak trees caused by chemicals injected by insects, are one of the most fascinating ecological phenomena found in the Laguna de Santa Rosa and a subject that warrants further examination. Lucy Martin is known as a botanical artist whose paintings are all about close observation, which often leads to increased understanding of the particular object at hand. She paints mainly in gouache (similar to watercolor but more opaque), with the addition of watercolor and occasionally colored pencil. In this class, we will take a close look at oak branches and oak galls that are present in abundance on the oaks throughout Sonoma County. Lucy will present techniques such as layering from dark to light, dry brush for texture, and using gouache to achieve intense color, which are methods that help create a painting that has a sense of depth and density. She will also demonstrate each step in the painting and provide one-on-one guidance as the students create their own compositions.

Lucy Martin lives in Sonoma County, California. She is mainly self-taught, with some formal training including classes with Mary Jo Koch. She exhibits in the Sebastopol Gallery and Calabi Gallery, as well as annually in Art Trails, the juried Sonoma County Open Studio art tour. Her work was purchased for the Permanent Collection of the Special Collections and Archives Department at the McHenry Library at UCSC. She has exhibited in international shows of the American Society of Botanical Artists and solo shows at the Library at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her art exhibit focused on lichens was on display in Heron Hall during the summer of 2018. Visit her website at www.lucymartinart.com.


 

 


Opening Reception: “A Watershed Event”
Pastels and Oil Paintings by James R. Reynolds
Saturday, September 14, 2019, 3:00pm - 5:00pm
FREE. No RSVP necessary. Light snacks provided.

Artist Statement
I am excited and honored to be exhibiting my paintings in Heron Hall at the Laguna Foundation. The pieces all depict scenes within the Laguna’s watershed or animals that live there. My work is an expression of my love of nature in her many guises. I believe that artists provide an important role in awakening a sense of appreciation, not simply of beauty, but of the fragile nature of this treasured land. If our hearts are touched by poetry, if we can connect with a deep sense of the perfection that is the Earth, and the tragedy of its loss, perhaps our species will begin to act with greater care and wisdom. A new painting emerges on my easel - a prayer going out into the universe, my song of joy and hope.

Artist Biography
After more than two decades working as a sculptor, my focus shifted to painting around 2002. Landscape is my main subject, and I also paint birds, animals and human figures and portraits. I have had the good fortune to study with many gifted professional artists, including Richard McDaniel, Clark Mitchell and Brooks Anderson. My work has been honored with two Best of Show awards (2015; 2011) and several Best Pastel and Best Oil awards at the Apple Blossom Art Show, as well as the popular vote at that show (2012). My portrait “Gabriel” won Best of Show at the juried “Face Me” portrait exhibit at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts (2012). I have donated a percentage of my sales, or donated paintings outright to benefit many local charitable organizations, including: Food for Thought, Sonoma Land Trust, Audubon Canyon Ranch, Face to Face, the Santa Rosa Symphony, the Sebastopol Center for the Arts and the Art Workshop of Western Sonoma County.

On display September 3 – December 20, 2019. To see more of James' work, we invite you to visit his website: www.JamesRReynolds.net/



Fresh Pressed Flowers
Workshop with Jan Lochner
Sunday, September 15, 2019, 1:00pm - 4:00pm
This workshop is sold out, but you are welcome to join the waitlist.

Experimenting and creating with pressed flowers is a great way to bring a bit of life and beauty into the dormant fall season. In this make-and-take workshop, local gardener and Laguna Foundation volunteer Jan Lochner will share the simplicity and elegance of the art of pressing flowers. Jan will demonstrate her personal techniques for pressing and using flowers. We will make various items, from bookmarks and cards to window ornaments and refrigerator magnets. Join us for this fun, hands-on and informative workshop as Jan shares her secrets of pressing flowers in hopes that you will continue to enjoy this easy and enjoyable art process on your own.

All workshop materials and supplies, including flowers, are provided. Participants need only bring an open creative spirit and a smile. Suitable for eight years old and up (minors must be accompanied by an adult).

Jan Lochner has been creating note cards from pressed flowers as a hobby for 25 years. She uses color, shape, and texture on fine quality paper, making each hand-made card unique. Her home in Sebastopol is her workshop with the dining room table seldom clear and kitchen cupboards filled with bags and boxes of flowers that she collects from her garden and other local sources.



Fall Impressions: A Natural Dye and Eco Print Workshop
With Shelly Spriggs (Regional Parks) and Laguna Foundation staff
Saturday, September 21, 9:00am - 2:00pm
$20. Pre-registration required.
This workshop is sold out, but you are welcome to join the waitlist.

You don’t have to be a painter or sculptor to learn to capture the colors and shapes of nature! Enter eco printing, which combines natural history, creativity and fun by using local leaves, fruits and flowers to create unique textile impressions on silk. Regional Parks’ naturalist Shelly Spriggs will bring samples of eco-printed scarves and give a step-by-step demonstration. We will harvest a small amount of leaves, petals, and other foliage from the Laguna Environmental Center’s native plant landscape and grandmother’s garden around the old farmhouse. We’ll learn how to arrange the collected plant materials on the silk, then fold, bundle and steam them in a pot of water which persuades the plants to transfer their image to the fabric with surprising color. While the prints are setting, we will take a 1-2 mile easy-paced walk along Irwin Creek to the Laguna on mostly flat but uneven terrain, if weather allows.

All workshop materials are provided. Bring a picnic lunch. This workshop and outing will take place rain or shine and is made possible through a partnership with the Laguna Foundation and Sonoma County Regional Parks.

Shelly Spriggs is a Sonoma County native – born and raised in the small town of Graton. Shelly leads a variety of guided outings throughout the county sharing her fascination, enthusiasm and extensive ecological knowledge with audiences of all ages. An eternal student of nature, avid wildlife tracker, experienced environmental educator and certified California Master Naturalist, she is also an integral player in the Laguna Foundation's wildlife camera project.





Natural Remedies Workshop
With Amy Charnay, MS, CNS
Sunday, September 22, 10:00am - 1:00pm
$65. Pre-registration required.

Using botanicals to create medicinal syrups, tinctures, and teas is a timeless craft combining art, science and nature. In addition to being loads of fun, there is the added benefit of boosting your immune and other body systems just in time for the arrival of fall and winter! In this workshop, we will make several take-home natural remedies including elderberry syrup, an herbal tincture, and loose-leaf teas to stock your natural medicine cabinet. Expert medicine-maker and clinical herbalist Amy Charnay will share her wealth of knowledge as she guides us through the step-by-step procedure from plant identification, harvesting, proper drying techniques to processing & preserving these beloved plant allies. Nurture your connection to the seasons, the land, and yourself through a hands-on practice you can continue the rest of your life.

Amy Charnay, MS, CNS hails from upstate New York and holds Bachelor’s degrees in Environmental Science & Latin American Studies and a Master’s of Science in Herbal Medicine. She has worked as an Herbalist, Board Certified Nutrition Specialist, and Yoga & Mindfulness Instructor for more than 15 years. Amy holds an international certification in Aromatherapy and is a FDA trained botanical microscopist with extensive experience in the herbal manufacturing industry as a formulator and quality control specialist. Amy teaches in the Herbal Medicine Masters of Science program at the Maryland University of Integrative Health and at the California School of Herbal Studies. She is passionate about applying her skills as a permaculturist and Sonoma County Master Gardener on her urban farm in Santa Rosa called ‘Herban Allies’. She views the human body as a complex and deeply interconnected ecosystem and maintains a private practice in Santa Rosa, CA.




Wild Lives of Wildlife: A Wildlife Camera Workshop with Shelly Spriggs
Saturday, September 28, 9:00am - 12:30pm
$35. Pre-registration required.

Do you ever wonder about the wildlife living near you? What are they up to when we aren’t around? Take a peek inside the wild lives of wildlife in this motion-activated trail camera workshop led by local naturalist Shelly Spriggs. Learn how these cameras work, helpful tips & tricks for setting them up and things to consider for choosing a successful location. In this hands-on guided walk, we will explore a recently completed restoration site along Irwin Creek covering approximately 1-2 miles at an easy-pace over mostly flat but uneven terrain. Participants will have the opportunity to work in small groups to set-up a wildlife camera on-site and receive an email of images captured by their camera.

Shelly Spriggs is a Sonoma County native – born and raised in the small town of Graton. Shelly leads a variety of guided outings throughout the county sharing her fascination, enthusiasm and extensive ecological knowledge with audiences of all ages. An eternal student of nature, avid wildlife tracker, experienced environmental educator and certified California Master Naturalist, she is also an integral player in the Laguna Foundation's wildlife camera project, monitoring & documenting wildlife within the Laguna de Santa Rosa.



[ top ]

 

October



Native Plant Sale by CNPS Milo Baker Chapter
Laguna Foundation Open House
Saturday, October 12. Plant sale from 10:00am – 2:00pm. Open House from 10:00am – 3:00pm.
Free. Donations gratefully accepted.

It’s planting season! Enjoy the warm fall colors at the Laguna Environmental Center while learning about California native plants and shopping for new additions to your garden. California natives are optimal for saving water, attracting pollinators, creating habitat for wildlife, and adding a beautiful local touch to your landscape. The plants for sale are tended with love and care all year round by dedicated CNPS Milo Baker volunteers in our shared nursery at the Laguna Environmental Center. Once you’ve shopped at the plant sale, you can explore the picturesque grounds, visit our own native plant garden, and stop by Heron Hall for educational activities and displays. It will also be a great opportunity to see the new Heron Hall exhibit “A Watershed Event” by artist James R. Reynolds.

We are proud to offer this event in collaboration with our local partners. Our friends with the Milo Baker Chapter of the California Native Plant Society will be here selling native plants from 10:00am to 2:00pm. Buy a few to take home, thereby supporting our local California Native Plant Society chapter while nurturing local wildlife habitat in your own backyard.

 



Birding Across the Watershed
Special Event with Pepperwood Preserve
Saturday, October 19, 8:30am - 3:30pm
Starting Location: Laguna Environmental Center, 900 Sanford Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95401
Ending Location: Pepperwood Preserve, 2130 Pepperwood Preserve Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95404
$50. Pre-registration required. Ages 13 and up welcome.

Join Pepperwood Preserve and Laguna de Santa Rosa Foundation staff and naturalists for a day of birding from the wetlands to the headwaters. We will look for a variety of year-round resident birds, the first migrants passing through, and those arriving to stay for the winter. We will start the day at Laguna de Santa Rosa – heading first to Santa Rosa Creek and then on to Delta Pond. As we explore these two water features we will keep our eyes and ears open for Nuttall’s Woodpeckers, Yellow-rumped Warblers, Great Egrets, and American White Pelicans as well as many other riparian and waterbird species. After lunch we will reconvene in the Mayacamas Mountains to explore the birds of Pepperwood’s oak woodland and grassland habitats. Here we will be on the lookout for Oak Titmice, Northern Harriers, Say’s Phoebes, and Meadowlarks. Expect a wonderfully robust species list as a result of this big day of birding!



Hoot ‘n Howl: Night Critters of the Laguna
Saturday, October 26, 6:00pm - 8:30pm
$20 for one parent with up to two kids, or $35 for families of four. Pre-registration required.

Bats, owls and spiders, oh my! Bring familiar Halloween creatures to life during this fun, family-friendly evening at the Laguna Environmental Center on historic Stone Farm. The Laguna is home to a variety of animals we see frequently during the day, but who comes out when the sun goes down? We will take a short walk around the grounds, poking our heads in to the ol’ Hop Barn to look for barn owls, listen for high-pitched bat calls, examine different spider webs, and use a UV light to attract wandering moths. After exploring outside, we will go inside to dissect owl pellets and create some simple take-home Halloween crafts to decorate your doorstep for the trick-or-treaters later in the week.

Join our Community Education Program Manager, Allison Titus, and our wonderful Laguna guides for this light hearted celebration of all things nocturnal.

 


[ top ]

 

November


 

Coiled Rush Basket
Workshop with Charlie Kennard
Sunday, November 2, 9:30am - 3:30pm
$100. Pre-registration required.

Enjoy a delightful day full of hands-on learning in Heron Hall and around the peaceful Laguna Environmental Center grounds with master weaver, Charlie Kennard. We will use rush (Juncus), a common wetland plant, as the foundation for the beginning of a small bowl-shaped basket. As binder, we will use peeled willow, another often-seen riparian plant around Sonoma County, grown and prepared by Charlie himself. Participants will also have the opportunity to practice splitting and trimming willow shoots. All basket-making materials are included in the registration fee. Participants must bring a water bowl, sharp pocket knife, very small diagonal wire clippers, and lunch. Hot drinks and snacks are provided throughout the day.

This workshop is suitable for adults and teenagers.

Charlie Kennard of San Anselmo is a long-time basket weaver and student of California Indian and other traditional basketry techniques of the world. He teaches throughout the Bay Area, and in many schools and at teacher trainings. Tule boats made in his workshops can be seen at the California Academy of Sciences, the Bay Model in Sausalito, and in the collection of the Lake County Museum. You can also visit a basketry plant garden Charlie has created at the Marin Art and Garden Center in Ross, where he and friends have woven a basket 13 feet across. Charlie is active in native habitat restoration in Marin, managing several projects for Friends of Corte Madera Creek Watershed.


River Otters on the Rise: Monitoring, Research and Results in the SF Bay Area
Presentation by Megan Isadore and Terence Carroll of River Otter Ecology Project
Thursday, November 7, 6:30pm - 8:00pm
$14 (non-refundable). Pre-registration required.

The River Otter Ecology Project has been monitoring and researching river otter recovery for seven years. Their community science-based project uses camera trapping and scat collection for genetic and bacterial analysis to answer some burning questions: where are the otters; how are they doing; what are the implications of the return of this apex aquatic predators; what is their ecosystem niche? Megan Isadore, Executive Director of the River Otter Ecology Project, and Terrence Carroll, Head of Data and Informatics, will talk about the community science "Otter Spotter” program as well as results from the River Otter Ecology Project’s 225km stretches of Marin coast, river, reservoir and bay. Please join us to see some of the rollicking reasons river otters make such excellent ambassadors for wetland restoration and watershed conservation. Great videos from our camera traps will make you happy!



The Natural World in Pastel
Workshop with James R. Reynolds
Saturday, November 16, 10:00am - 3:00pm (takes place indoors, rain or shine)
$95. Pre-registration required.

Pastel is a popular and exciting medium that lends itself to lively portrayal of nature, since pastel sticks are made of pure color pigment. James Reynolds, the fall exhibiting artist at the Laguna Foundation, will show participants how to create vivid paintings in a relaxed and stimulating atmosphere looking out over the Laguna de Santa Rosa from Heron Hall. Topics of exploration will include composition, under painting, layering, varieties of mark making, color harmonies, and more. He will also touch on technical issues such as framing, use of fixatives, and material choices, addressing how to create a work of pastel art from start to finish. James will demonstrate each step in the pastel painting process and provide one-one-one guidance as participants create their own composition. Beginners are welcome, all supplies are provided, and photo references will be available for subject matter.

James R. Reynolds is an award winning artist living in Sebastopol, California. He has been an artist since he could hold a pencil. A sculptor in his 20s and 30s, James started painting in pastel and oil about 15 years ago. He has studied with many prominent local artists including Richard McDaniel, Clark Mitchell and Marsha Connell. James' work can be seen at Heron Hall from September 3, 2019 to January 5, 2020 His work is also on display daily at the Sebastopol Gallery and Corrick's in Santa Rosa. He participates in two annual Studio shows: Art at the Source in June, and Art Trails in October. To see more of James' work, visit his website at www.JamesRReynolds.net.


Holiday Soap Making Workshop
With Kelly Smith
Saturday, November 23, 10:00am - 12:30pm
$40. Pre-registration required.

Learn a fun and useful new skill just in time for making unique homemade gifts for the holidays! If you’re new to cold process soap making, it can seem a bit overwhelming even with all of the online resources available; sometimes they make it even more confusing. From the chemistry of soap making, formulating recipes based on your own needs (such as dry skin), and breaking down the step-by step process, this hands-on class leaves no soap making secrets untold. Taught by veteran soap maker Kelly Smith of Rubber Ducky Soap, this workshop is designed to help you feel confident making bars of soap in your own kitchen, in addition to sending you home with two batches of soap made with additives and scents agreed upon during the class.

Kelly Smith was drawn to soap making after a friend gave her a bar of soap they had made when she was in her mid 20’s. Once she tried the handmade bar, she was driven to learn how to make soap herself, having been plagued by dry skin her entire life. After a few failed attempts, Kelly finally figured out how to make soap like the one she was given. By then, she was hooked and decided she would start a home-based business selling soap at local farmers’ markets and craft fairs. Kelly now operates 11 markets in Sonoma and Marin Counties and has turned passion for making cold process soap into a successful hobby business.


[ top ]

 

December


 


NEW Rescheduled Date!
The Paradox of Preservation: Wilderness and Working Landscapes at Point Reyes National Seashore
Presentation by Laura Alice Watt, Professor, Department of Geography, Environment, and Planning at Sonoma State University
Thursday, December 5, 6:30pm - 8:30pm
Registration opening soon!

Both Point Reyes National Seashore and the Laguna de Santa Rosa could be described as “Leopoldian”, or places that exemplify Aldo Leopold’s ideas about the interconnections between wild and cultivated landscapes - yet the practicalities of including active agriculture within a federally protected area like Point Reyes National Seashore bring their own challenges. The history of Congressional intent to protect the continuation of over a century of dairy and beef ranching on the peninsula has come into recent clashes with the idea that public lands “should” be dominated by wildlife and recreation use. Laura Alice Watt’s recent book compiling years of research addresses how environmental history can help us to understand, and perhaps solve, this management dilemma. Join us for this thought-provoking talk that will chronicle how national ideals about what a park “ought to be” have developed over time, and what happens when these ideals are implemented by the National Park Service in its efforts to preserve places that are also lived-in landscapes.

Laura Alice Watt is a professor of environmental history and policy at Sonoma State University. Her long-term research agenda is to explore the history of protected landscapes to bolster their long-term sustainability in terms of both natural and cultural systems. In contrast to most land policy research, she uses landscape as a tool for understanding the complex interactions between people and their environments, tracking historical changes in protected areas as indicators of shifting social dynamics and structures. Prior to coming to SSU, she worked as an environmental consultant in San Francisco for four years with EDAW, Inc., specializing in writing resource management plans for the Bureau of Land Management, as well as historic landscape analyses for a variety of government agencies. Outside of school she is an avid photographer and sailor.


[ top ]

 

Also on tap, coming up ... Stay tuned for details!

  • Thursday, October 10 - A River's Last Chance, Documentary Film Screening

Cancellation Policy

If you are registered for an event and need to cancel, please notify us as soon as possible so that others may attend. Cancellations received more than 30 days in advance of the event date will receive a refund minus a $10.00 processing fee. Cancellations made between 30-7 days in advance will receive a 50% refund. We are sorry but refunds cannot be given on cancellations made less than 7 days in advance. Please also note that we often need a minimum number of participants to conduct most events. If the Laguna Foundation needs to cancel the event for any reason, we will notify you as soon as possible (at least 1 day prior to the event) and you will receive a full refund.

Non-Refundable Fee

Events that cost $20 and less are non-refundable (except in case of our cancelling for inclement weather or other extenuating circumstances, in which case we will issue full refunds). This is due to administrative costs and significant processing fees associated with online registration services such as Eventbrite. Thank you for your understanding and for your interest and support of our programs!


For more information, contact Allison Titus, Community Education Program Manager
(707) 527-9277 xt. 110 or by email at Allison@LagunaFoundation.org.

[ top ]