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Night Quest 2017

  • Saturday March 25, 2017
    7:00 PM – 9:30 PM

    at Pacific Spirit Regional Park
    Meet at Park Centre on 16th Ave, 400 m west of Blanca St

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    Nature at night is a magical experience. Wander 2 km of lantern-lit trails and explore like owls, squirrels, coyotes and other nocturnal critters.

    Bring a flashlight or lantern and a mug for the cash-only concession. Trails are wheelchair and stroller accessible. Allow 1.5 hours to complete.

    Presented by Metro Vancouver with Pacific Spirit Park Society

    FREE

    Drop by anytime

    ALL AGES

    Photos: Bruce McPherson

Photo: Linda Mueller

Nature Fun for February

It may be too snowy to run our restoration events, but there are plenty of great opportunities to get into nature in the Metro Vancouver area this month.

Thursday, February 9
Vanier Park Birding
This is a half day field trip covering Vanier Park and West to Kits Beach pool. Expect to see Sea Ducks, Grebes, and sparrows. Beginner birders welcome. 9 am, meet at the Totem Pole on the path behind The Maritime Museum. There is limited free parking in the area. Leader Adrian 604 263 7957.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

Thursday, February 9, 7:30 p.m 
Photogrammetry of Cetaceans
Dr. Lance Barrett-Lenard
In recent years, Dr. Lance Barrett Lenard, along with colleagues, has been studying cetaceans from the air – with a drone specially equipped with a camera. Photographing and videoing whales from above is providing valuable information on body condition, size and behaviours that are impossible to observe in any other way, with neglible impact on the animals being studied. Dr. Lance Barrett- Lenard is the Senior Research Scientist at the Vancouver Aquarium’s Cetacean Research Lab.
held at the Unitarian Centre at 949 West 49th Avenue (at Oak Street), Vancouver.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

Friday – February 10
Nature Walk at Campbell Valley Regional Park
Join Gareth Pugh to walk the network of trails through this regional park with its diversity of habitats and wildlife. Bring some seed to feed the birds and squirrels and check out all the different trees that can be found there. Meet at 9:00 am in the 16th Avenue parking lot.
Please phone 604-576-6831 for information and to let us know to expect you.
Organized by Langley Field Naturalists

Saturday, Feb 11 (2 – 3:30pm)
Bear Creek Wildlife Walk
Search for signs of wildlife in this park’s diverse meadow, forest, and creek habitats. Look for the eagle nest, check out wildlife trees, and take a peek in the creek – who will you see? Meet at the south edge of the parking lot, in front of the water park. Ages 10+, rain or shine. For more information, call 604-502-6065 or visit www.surrey.ca/parks.

Bear Creek Park (13750 – 88 Ave)

FAMILY FUN DAYS
February 11~13, 11:00 am~4:00 pm
Richmond Nature Park, 11851 Westminster Highway, Richmond
Come to the Richmond Nature Park for some adventurous family fun! Explore the bog through special family scavenger and treasure hunts. Check out a display about the Northern Spotted Owl – one of Canada’s most endangered species.
Admission is by donation. Proceeds support the Richmond Nature Park Society’s environmental education programs.
This event is suitable for all ages.

Family Day At Fort Langley National Historic Site
February 13, 2017 @ 10:00 Am~5:00 Pm
Celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday for free and experience a day in the life of a fur trader family. Participate in 1800s chores, watch an historic weapons demonstration take part in a nature walk and find out what life was like for a family living at Fort Langley. Take a picture in our photo booth, feed the animals, watch blacksmith and barrel-making demonstrations, fire a reproduction musket between 11 am and 3 pm (small fee), and join in on the fun with our new family scavenger hunt.

Family Day Campfire | all ages
Mon, February 13, 12:30~3:30 pm
PACIFIC SPIRIT REGIONAL PARK
Drop by for a cozy campfire and learn about plants and animals through story and song.
Meet at 16th Ave parking lot, 400 m west of Blanca St.
FREE Drop by anytime.

For the Love of Nature | all ages
Mon, February 13, 11 am~2 pm
BURNABY LAKE & CAMPBELL VALLEY REGIONAL PARKs
Celebrate nature with family and loved ones this Family Day weekend.
Enjoy arts and crafts activities that expand your ability to observe and appreciate nature.
Meet at the Nature House. FREE Drop by anytime.

For the Love of Nature
Monday, February 13, 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Campbell Valley Regional Park
Meet at the Nature House.
Celebrate nature with family and loved ones this Family Day weekend.  Enjoy arts and crafts activities that expand your ability to observe and appreciate nature.
All ages. Free. Drop by anytime. 604-432-6359, programs.info@metrovancouver.org

Wednesday – February 15
Nature Walk at Sumas Prairie
Join Wim Vesseur to travel through the beautiful pastoral Fraser Valley which is an overwintering location for many raptors!  We will be looking for birds of prey – such as the Red-tailed Hawk, Harlan’s Red-tailed Hawk, American Kestrel and Rough-legged Hawks plus any surprises we find along the way!  We will warm up after with warm drinks at a restaurant. Meet at 9:00 am at McDonalds, 34618 Delair Road, Abbotsford, off Hwy 1 exit no.92, off Sumas Way North. Please phone 604-534-3447 for information and to let us know to expect you.
Organized by Langley Field Naturalists

Thursday, February 16
What will we use the forests for
John Innes
Description of talk: British Columbia’s forests have traditionally been seen solely as a source of wood (for lumber and pulp), with minor attention being paid to recreation. This approach will have to change due to a number of internal and external pressures, including decreasing timber supplies, changing demands from an increasingly urbanized population, and changes in global wood trade patterns. Forests will play a major role in a future bio-economy, should Canada decide to pursue this. Whether or not this approach is taken, the importance of forests for biodiversity, water, soil protection, and a range of cultural and social benefits is likely to be increasingly recognized.
About the speaker: John Innes is Dean of the Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia. He has taught a range of courses including forest management, international forestry and tropical forest ecology. His research currently focusses on the adaptation of forests and forest-dependent peoples to climate change.
at 7:30 p.m. at the Unitarian Church, 49th at Oak, Vancouver.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

Saturday, February 18, 10:00am
Garry Point Park/West Dyke
Loop around Garry Point Park and continue along the West Dyke trail while taking in the spectacular views of the Gulf Islands and Coastal Mountains.
Meeting spot: Garry Point concession stand, 12011 7th Avenue.
www.richmond.ca/walk

Derby Tales Round the Campfire | all ages
Saturday, February 18, noon~3 pm
DERBY REACH REGIONAL PARK
Gather round a crackling campfire for tales of nature and life in the wilderness. Bake bannock and bring a mug for hot chocolate.
Meet across road from Heritage Area on Allard Cres, north of 96th Ave and 4 km west of Fort Langley.
FREE Drop by anytime.

Saturday, February 18
Birding at Colony Farm
Colony Farm RP is home to many over wintering raptors, sparrows, waterfowl and usually a Northern Shrike or two. Come discover what species the park has to offer on this year’s half-day outing. Meet at the parking area at the south end of Colony Farm Rd. in Coquitlam at 0900. Larry Cowan 604-307-0931.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

March 18, 10am – 1pm
Earthwise Society’s family-friendly Rain Day is a free event that will be held during Spring Vacation at the Earthwise Garden at 6400 3rd Avenue, in Delta (near Centennial Beach).

The event is kid-focused and will feature a children’s entertainer, an interactive dance, rainstick crafts, and a water band. There will be a Rain Sculpture contest that community members can vote in as well as a chance to walk around Earthwise’s organic garden. Kids can wear and show off their favourite rain gear and umbrellas. We aim to make rain more fun and to increase appreciation of its ecosystem benefits in our coastal temperate rainforest! Everyone is welcome.

Saturday, February 25, 9 am
Jericho Park Birding
This is a half day field trip covering the ponds and foreshore. Meet at the West entrance to the Park at N.W Marine Drive and Discovery Street. There is limited free parking in the area plus public transit. Washrooms available along the route. Leader: Adrian 604 263 7957.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

Saturday – February 25
Nature Walk at Brydon Lagoon, Langley
Join Al Grass and Annabel Griffiths to look for the many waterfowl, raptors, and other birds that call this wetland their home in winter and learn more about how LFN are working with the City of Langley to improve this valuable urban park.  Meet at the 53rd Avenue parking lot near 198A Street, Langley at 9:00 am.
Please phone 604 538 8774 or 604-530-2778 for information and to let us know to expect you. Organized by Langley Field Naturalists

Raptor Watch | ages 9+
Sat, February 25, 10 am~noon
BOUNDARY BAY REGIONAL PARK
View raptors through a spotting scope as they hunt in and around the bay. Test your raptor smarts at the birds of prey display.
Meet at Boundary Bay Dyke Trail at 72nd Ave.
Presented with Delta Naturalists and Langley Field Naturalists. FREE Drop by anytime.

Sunday, February 26
Birding walk along Fraser River and Sturgeon Banks
Join Kelly Sekhon for a birding walk along Fraser River and Sturgeon Banks in Richmond. Meet at 9 am at Tim Hortons on #3 Road across the street from Aberdeen station of Canada Line SkyTrain. Bring a lunch and a hot drink and change for bus fare. Dress for cold and windy weather.
We will walk all the way to Garry point (10 km) and take the bus back to Aberdeen Station. For more information, please contact Kelly kellysekhon@yahoo.com  by email only. Cell phone 778-979-0558 for last minute updates. Note: Parking for all day may be a problem so use transit or park somewhere in town and then take Canada Line to Aberdeen station.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

Cammidge House Heritage Day | all ages
Sun, February 26, 1~4 pm
BOUNDARY BAY REGIONAL PARK
Join us at Cammidge House to get a peek into the local history. Enjoy tea and baked goods. Meet at Cammidge House.
Presented by Boundary Bay Park Association. FREE Drop by anytime.
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Thursday, March 2
Madagascar – The “Eighth Continent”
Peter Candido
Because of its isolation from other land masses for about 90 million years, Madagascar is one of the most biologically distinct regions on earth.  Approximately 90% of its animal and plant species are endemic.  Madagascar is home to five endemic bird families, an endemic primate family, the lemurs, of which there are over 100 species, more than 260 species of reptiles, 266 species of amphibians and a remarkable diversity of invertebrates.
Join Peter for a comprehensive birding and wildlife tour covering all major habitats of this amazing island.
at 7:30 p.m. in the Parish Hall of St. Mary’s (Kerrisdale) Anglican Church, 2490 West 37th Avenue (at Larch Street), Vancouver.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca


Friday, March 3

Nature Walk at 8th Avenue Trail
Join Bob Puls to walk the section of the South Langley Regional Trail from 256th Street to 264th Street. This is a fairly new trail, recently completed by the Back Country Horsemen, as the last link between the Campbell Valley and Aldergrove Regional Parks. The trail is nicely gravelled all the way, with wooded sections interspersed by stream valleys crossed by a couple of brand new bridges, and a variety of open and closed habitat. Meet at 9:00 am at 1062 – 256th Street.
lease phone 604-856-7534 for information and to let us know to expect you.
Organized by Langley Field Naturalists


Saturday, March 4, 10:00am
Burkeville Park–Sea Island
Stroll through the historic community of Burkeville on foot exploring this neighbourhood’s unique characteristics.
Meeting spot: Burkeville Park playground (between Airport Drive and Catalina Crescent).
www.richmond.ca/walk

Volunteer_8

#WelcometoCanada!

Did you know that PSPS hosted a series of pre-employment skills training events for new immigrants and refugees this summer?

These pilot program events went so well that we have been seeking funding to help PSPS develop a long-term citizen science program in Pacific Spirit Regional Park for new immigrants and refugees.  If you are interested in supporting this project, you can donate now.  Your support will help PSPS make an environmental and social impact!

Remember to note that your donation is for the PSPS New Immigrant Citizen Science Program in the message box on the Pacific Parklands Foundation link.

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Remembering with Gratitude

Pacific Spirit Regional Park was designated as a park in 1989 thanks to the hard work and dedication of many passionate individuals.  Dr. Richard (Dick) Stace-Smith was instrumental in the creation and planning for many Metro Vancouver Regional Parks, including Pacific Spirit and influential in the protection of the Camosun Bog.  It is with deep sadness and gratitude that we remember Dick and his contributions to conservation efforts in and around Vancouver.

Joan & Dick Stace-Smith         Dr. Richard (Dick) Stace-Smith

Dick was born May 2, 1924 in Creston, BC where he grew up and then went onto post-secondary studies to obtain his doctorate in Agriculture and a career with Agriculture Canada.

Dick is well known to many naturalists for his extensive volunteer contributions over more than half a century.  As president of the BC Nature Council in the 1960s, he led the formation of the Federation of BC Naturalists in 1969.  He served as FBCN president, as president of Vancouver Natural History Society, and as Conservation Chair for decades with the joint VNHS-FBCN Committee.  Dick also served as co-chair of the Fraser River Coalition and Resolutions Chair for FBCN (BC Nature), as well as a founding director for the BC Naturalists’ Foundation in 1990.  Dick passed away on January 17, 2017.  He was pre-deceased by his wife, of 64 years, Joan, in May 2015.

Dick is fondly remembered for his skills as a diplomatic meeting chair and coordinator for conferences and workshops, where he was always tactful and respectfully involved all points of view.

Celebration of Life for Dick will be held on Saturday, February 4, 2017 at West Point Grey United Church, 4595 West 8th Avenue, Vancouver, at 2 pm.  All welcome.

Jericho Bush tit with nesting material

Looking to Connect more with Nature in 2017?

If one of your New Year goals was to spend more time learning about or being in nature, here is a list of events in the area.  I hope there is something on the list that catches your eye!

Tuesday, January 17
Birding Trip to Iona Beach Regional Park – Richmond
Meet the leader Thomas Plath (cell 778 928-9206) at the parking lot of Iona Island Regional Park at 0830 AM or carpool at 0750 AM at Tim Horton’s near Steveston Hwy and No. 5 Road, Richmond. A two hour walk – bring a snack and suitable clothing for the weather.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Wednesday, January 18
Birding Trip to Trout Lake (John Hendry Park – Vancouver)
Join Al Grass for this ½ day birding trip. Meet at 9:30am in front of the Trout Lake Community Centre (Victoria Drive and 19th Avenue) which is close to the SkyTrain and bus stops.  This is a great birding area and there are always surprises.  It is also a good spot for new birders to hone their skills and chance to see California Gulls. Contact Al Grass at 604 538 8774.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Wednesday, January 18
Geology of some buildings and monuments in downtown Vancouver
Meeting location: Will be revealed on registration. Meeting time: 10:00 am. Duration: 3 to 4 hours. Terrain: Street walking. Event description: We will examine the exterior and interior of a number of buildings in downtown Vancouver to look at the various natural building stones used in construction and decoration. The provenance, composition and suitability of these materials will be explained. We will note how their use has changed over time according to availability, cost, custom and durability of materials used. This will also be an opportunity to learn about masonry terminology, the history of the buildings and their architecture. Registration: Because of a need to limit the size of the group and because the event may be rescheduled due to weather, registration is required. Contact David at 604-924-0147 or by email to register and receive details as to the meeting location.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Thursday, January 19
Botanical research in late season habitats: Don’t go home too early!
Terry McIntosh
Description of talk: Terry has spent many of the last autumns searching the edges of rivers and lakes for late season plants…plants that are often hidden under water until mid to late summer and which can only be accounted for once the edges of water bodies dry down. Numerous provincially At Risk plants are restricted to these habitats. Terry will show images of many of these plants, describe their unique life strategies and habitats, and encourage you to get out so that you can see for yourself that striking late season world! About the speaker: Terry McIntosh, Ph.D. is a botanist with over 35 years of experience in public education, ecological consulting, and scientific research. He has recently undertaken a number of bryophyte and ecosystem surveys, and has produced reports for both provincial and federal agencies (CDC and COSEWIC). He is familiar with plants and vegetation communities across British Columbia, in particular interior shrub-grasslands and coastal Garry oak ecosystems. He frequently participates in rare plant inventories, most recently on Salt Spring Island, the south Okanagan Valley, and along the Sunshine Coast.
at 7:30 p.m. at the Unitarian Church, 49th at Oak, Vancouver.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Whooo’s Hoot Owl Prowl | ages 8+
Fri, January 20, 7~9 pm
CAMPBELL VALLEY REGIONAL PARK
Join naturalists on a night prowl for owls and discover why owls are such great hunters of the night.
Presented with Langley Field Naturalists.
#6698 FREE Registration required: 604-432-6359

 

Saturday – January 21
Nature Walk at Terra Nova Rural Park, Richmond
Join Josh to walk along the dike looking for raptors, snow geese and other birds that spend the winter in the marshes on the West side of Richmond. We will also walk through the park and the community gardens checking out the ponds along the way. Meet at 9:00 am in the parking lot at the end of River Road (NW corner of Richmond).
Please phone 604-532-0455 for information and to let us know to expect you.
Organized by Langley Field Naturalists

 

Saturday, January 21
Birding Trip to Brunswick Point, Delta
Meet the leader Thomas Plath (cell 778 928-9206) at the base of the parking lot at the end of River Road, Delta at 0830 AM or carpool at 0750 AM at Tim Horton’s near Steveston Hwy and No. 5 Road, Richmond. A half day trip – bring a snack and suitable clothing for the weather.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Saturday, January 21
Birding Pitt River Dyke
Join us for a half-day birding field trip along Port Coquitlam’s Pitt River Dyke north from the east end of Sherling Place back to the parking lot at DeBoville Slough. This route covers excellent dyke-side habitats. We will be on the hunt for visiting winter and resident species. Meet in the main parking lot adjacent to the public washrooms at Cedar & Victoria Drives (DeBoville Slough) in Port Coquitlam at 0900. We will then carpool to our start point on Sherling Place. Larry Cowan 604-307-0931
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Vive Les Voyageurs French-Canadian Festival
January 21~22, 10 am~5:00 pm
Ice Sculpting at January 21, at 1:00 pm
Complimentary admission for Canada 150
Tap your feet and clap to the beat of French Canada at Fort Langley National Historic Site’s annual winter festival. Enliven a grey January weekend with the unique folklore and culture of the voyageurs and fur traders who lived at 19th-century Fort Langley. Learn a Métis dance, attend a French 101 lesson, join our Fur Trade Wedding and fill up on delicious maple taffy and poutine while listening to live Voyageur-style music. Saturday at 1 pm, kick off Canada150 with an ice sculpting demonstration. Admission is free in 2017. View full schedule online.
http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/lhn-nhs/bc/langley/visit.aspx

 

Family Day at PDA!
January 22, 2017 @ 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm
Place des Arts, 1120 Brunette Ave, Coquitlam
Gather up the clan and drop by Place des Arts for its first Family Day of the New Year. Participate in a variety of all-ages, drop-in style art activities related to three new exhibitions, plus paint along to live music performed by Place des Arts piano teacher Barry Tan in a new activity called Notes in Painting. Admission is free; register online at www.brownpapertickets.com

 

Sunday, January 22, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Nest Box Program in Burnaby Lake Regional Park
Help the Burnaby Lake Park Association service over 200 nest boxes that provide homes for wood ducks, flying squirrels, swallows and chickadees.
Ages 8+ Free. Presented by Burnaby Lake Park Association, 604-432-6359, info@burnabylakepark.ca

 

Tuesday, January 24
Birding Trip to Terra Nova, Richmond
Meet the leader Thomas Plath (cell 778 928-9206) at the Westminster Highway parking lot at 0830 AM or carpool at 0750 AM at Tim Horton’s near Steveston Hwy and No. 5 Road, Richmond. A two hour walk – bring a snack and suitable clothing for the weather.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Wednesday – January 25
Nature Walk at O.W.L. and Boundary Bay Dike
Join Al Grass for a 90 minute presentation and a walk around the facility to find out how injured birds are rehabilitated and released back into the wild. There is a small charge of $5 per person.
If the weather is suitable we will follow this visit with a walk on the Boundary Bay dike to look for the variety of birds that spend the winter in this very important area including the beautiful Short-eared Owl. Bring lunch. Meet at 9:45 am in the parking lot at O.W.L., 3800 72nd Street, Delta.
Please phone 604-538-8774 for information and to let us know to expect you.
Organized by Langley Field Naturalists

 

Thursday, January 26
THE PEACE RIVER BREAK
TIM BURKHART
The Peace River Break is a crossroads in the Yellowstone to Yukon corridor, enabling wildlife to journey between two big islands of protected habitat. Find out how local partners and First Nations are keeping this key connection intact.
at 7:30 p.m. at the Unitarian Church, 49th at Oak, Vancouver.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Whooo’s Hoot Owl Prowl | ages 8+
Fri, January 27, 7~9:00 pm
CAMPBELL VALLEY REGIONAL PARK
Join naturalists on a night prowl for owls and discover why owls are such great hunters of the night.
Presented with Langley Field Naturalists.
#6722 FREE Registration required: 604-432-6359

Saturday, January 28
Birding Trip to Serpentine Wildlife Management Area (formerly known as Serpentine Fen)
Meet the leader Thomas Plath (778 928-9206) at the Serpentine Fen parking lot at 0830 AM or carpool at 0750 AM at Tim Horton’s near Steveston Hwy and No. 5 Road, Richmond. A half day trip – bring a snack and suitable clothing for the weather.
Organized by Nature Vancouver refer to www.naturevancouver.ca

 

Saturday – January 28
Nature Walk at Derby Reach/Brae Island Bird Count
Birders of all levels are needed to help with the count. This is a great opportunity for beginners to learn from more experienced birders. Meet 7:30 am at St. George’s Church in Fort Langley.
Please phone Phil Henderson 604-888-1571 for information and to let us know to expect you. Organized by Langley Field Naturalists

Photo: Linda Mueller

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Gratitude

THANK YOU!

Pacific Spirit Park Society would like to extend our gratitude for the funds and in-kind donations we received this year.  As a not-for-profit organization these generous gifts allow PSPS to run free high quality programs in Pacific Spirit Regional Park all year round.  

We truly could not do our work without you!

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$1,000-5,000

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Under $1,000

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Once a horse stable

This fall PSPS planted over 2000 trees in a large restoration site along South West Marine Drive, in a site that was once covered in Scotch Broom and Himalayan Blackberries.

Why was this area so impacted by the spread of invasive plants?

The other week a park visitor came by to chat and mentioned that years ago the site held the horse stables for the milk delivery carts.  After the horse stables were no longer used, the site did not have any protection against the spread of invasive plants. If you have time, here is little video showing milk delivery with a horse drawn wagon in Vancouver many years ago.  Do you recognize any of the streets? My, how things have changed!

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Natural Playgrounds

Pacific Spirit Regional Park is one of the last places in Vancouver where children can play in nature.  However, each year when we survey the park’s illegal trails we find more and more areas around elementary schools being impacted by off trail play.

What are your ideas for balancing nature play and ecological restoration?

Share your thoughts with us on Twitter, Facebook or by email at volunteer@pacificspiritparksociety.org.