[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

SCVNews.com | Opinion/Commentary: A New Adventure | 12-21-2016
Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Clear
Clear
64°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
April 25
1891 - President Benjamin Harrison stops at Saugus Depot, dines at Tolfree's Saugus Eating House [story]


| Wednesday, Dec 21, 2016

evelynevandersande_mugThe holidays are upon us, and we all run from one activity to the next: parties, shopping, baking. Writing all those cards has become less of a chore since we send many more via the internet. But there are always those friends who send you a card in the last week, and you try to respond in a timely manner as if it had been your plan all along to send a card just before the New Year. Shopping does not necessarily mean you have to go to the mall and look endlessly for a parking space, the internet has also relieved some of your anxiety on that score. However, you still end up looking frantically for a gift for the beloved teacher on the evening before the last day of school!

I remember a time when we waited for the “garbage men” or the “mail men” to give them an envelope to thank them for their work during the year!

While you are running behind the clock, it does not seem possible that all this stress will be over in 2 weeks. The New Year will come along and after one blissful week with nothing happening at all, you are going to feel like a deflated soufflé. What are you going to do with this New Year of 2017 stretching out with a long list of empty days in front of you? Do you remember your New Years’ resolutions? You were going to learn something new this year…you were going to enlarge your circle of friends. You were not going to procrastinate and you were going to make it happen right away. Whatever you were going to do, it should be close by because, for sure, you do not want to commute on the freeway. It would be nice if it could be outdoors for some of the time. After all, where else but in California can you be outdoors in the winter? You should take advantage of that somehow…Maybe you are getting a little bit older so you have more free time on your hands, but having fun with kids sounds like a good idea, too.
Do you want all this wrapped up in one nice package?

I have one answer for you. And even better, you will make a difference in your community, so you will gain something for yourself in the process and are also going to help total strangers. This is a sure plan, with success guaranteed from the start:

I want to present to you the Volunteer Naturalist Training at Placerita Canyon Natural Area.

What do they do there, and do I need any experience?

You do not need any special background, but you do need to attend the docent training and to be able to volunteer twice a month after you finish your training.

The training starts Tuesday, January 10 at 9.00 a.m.

The classes meet Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 12 noon and it is a 9-week training program. The cost of the training is $45.00, which includes all training materials (instruction manual, field guide, T-shirt, and related items).

The minimum age to be a volunteer naturalist is 18.

We have found that some young people, looking for a job, attend our classes to add valuable experience to their résumé and become a more desirable candidate for certain job openings. Very often, they also form a lasting attachment to Placerita and the nature education our park offers, and they come back as volunteers when their schedule allows.

What are you going to learn at Placerita?

Class topics include native plants, ecology, insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals, geology, history and interpretive techniques to apply your knowledge on the trails. Our instructors include noted professionals in the various fields.

Each class will give you a solid background to understand each topic and it is up to you, if you are interested, to further your knowledge.

Each class is on DVD, so you can review the material at any time.

Even more fun, the other docents are always willing to share their knowledge, take you on the trail and answer questions.

Placerita is not a place for egos, everybody is there to learn and support one another, share stories and become a new friend. If it sounds too good to be true, I recommend that you come for a visit and check the place out…maybe on a Saturday from 1 to 2 pm during the animal presentation? That will give you a true flavor of the place, you might never go home!

I did not even mention the animals. When you come to Placerita, you will see a sample of some of our birds on the patio: the red tail hawk, turkey vulture and raven. Those animals could not be released in the wild because of previous injuries and they are used to teach the visitors about the local wildlife. We have many more animals inside the building: different kinds of owls, snakes, tarantula, bees, skunk etc. You will learn to handle some of those animals (only if you are interested) and some stay inside their habitat but you will learn about them and you will be able to teach the visitors about them.

That is one of the most fun and interesting parts of the class and it is always a joy to see new volunteers becoming bee or grizzly experts. It happens on a regular basis that a new student finds a passion for a topic, learns on their own more that we thought was possible, and becomes a teacher giving presentations and sharing their new knowledge during different nature education programs.

Passion is what is going to happen to you. Be aware of that… If you want your life to take a whole new direction, share fun experiences and enjoy nature around you at a whole new level, please call Placerita Nature Center at 661.259.7721 or visit the web site at placerita.org.

Happy New Year to all, and my best wishes for a great and healthy new year, full of fantastic new adventures.

Evelyne Vandersande122116_1


Evelyne Vandersande122116_5

Evelyne Vandersande122116_4

Evelyne Vandersande122116_3

Evelyne Vandersande122116_2

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

3 Comments

  1. jim says:

    That sounds interesting. I remember a biologist/naturalist at Placerita back in the late 80’s-early 90’s who was a relentless advocate for keeping the canyon pristine. He also led tours down in Central America and perhaps even the islands (Puerto Rico?). I think his name was Frank Devore, but that could be a by-product of an aging memory. Still, he was an intense and persuasive figure around the park.

    Any idea what happened to him Leon?

  2. jim says:

    Ding, ding, ding! Thanks for clearing that up – and helping me to remember a bit more. Frank was quite a guy. He did retire from the County and then in 2006 passed away from a heart attack on a beetle collecting trip in Ecuador.

Leave a Comment


Opinion Section Policy
All opinions and ideas are welcome. Factually inaccurate, libelous, defamatory, profane or hateful statements are not. Your words must be your own. All commentary is subject to editing for legibility. There is no length limit, but the shorter, the better the odds of people reading it. "Local" SCV-related topics are preferred. Send commentary to: LETTERS (at) SCVNEWS.COM. Author's full name, community name, phone number and e-mail address are required. Phone numbers and e-mail addresses are not published except at author's request. Acknowledgment of submission does not guarantee publication.
Read More From...
Related Content
RECENT COMMENTARY
Friday, Apr 21, 2017
It is a hallmark of a civilized society to manage its waste appropriately. However, it is the hallmark of a morally civilized society to do so without exploiting its most marginalized members and making them bear the burden of detrimental health effects when they are the least likely to be able to defend themselves.
Thursday, Apr 20, 2017
Curtis Howe Springer was a self-professed medical doctor and Methodist minister, but he did not hold a license to be either. He was a radio evangelist in Pennsylvania in the 1930s, and he used that platform to convince his faithful followers to move to Zzyzx so they could begin a utopian way of living with an abundance of miracle cures.
Friday, Apr 14, 2017
Managing chronic diseases can be difficult, to say the least. You often face multiple visits to one or more doctors; you must take multiple drugs at different times on different days; you have to make extra trips for tests. It can all be a bit overwhelming.
Friday, Apr 7, 2017
One would think Trump has done at least one or two things right; after all, even a stopped clock is right twice a day.
Wednesday, Apr 5, 2017
If politicians attend dinners where they are honored by business concerns that also contribute to their campaign funds, and then the politicians come out in support of that business, well, how does it make our politicians look? The landfill promised our community of Val Verde it would be closed by now, but instead it wants to double in size, becoming one of the nation’s largest.
Monday, Apr 3, 2017
Our City takes caring for the environment seriously with not just words, but with action. I invite the entire community to join me in attending the Earth Arbor Day Festival, where going green is fun and easy!

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1891 - President Benjamin Harrison stops at Saugus Depot, dines at Tolfree's Saugus Eating House [story]
Tonight on SCV NewsBreak, we look back at the 2017 Cowboy Festival. Plus, the first Measure E bonds have been sold. Watch these stories and more on tonight's edition of SCV NewsBreak.
SCV NewsBreak for Monday, April 24, 2017
As part of National Volunteer Week, which runs from April 23 to 29, 2017, the city of Santa Clarita thanks the thousands of volunteers who dedicate their time and energy to the community.
City of Santa Clarita Thanks Volunteers during National Volunteer Week
Join HandsOn Santa Clarita for a night of poker, prizes, a silent auction and great food all while supporting this organization on Friday, May 5 at The Paseo Club.
May 5: Cinco de Mayo Charity Poker Tournament for HandsOn Santa Clarita
Last month (March 2017), Welcome to My Life won an NYICFF (New York Children's Film Festival) Audience Award for children (between 12 and 17 years old).
CalArts Animator Wins NYICFF Audience Award
Laura Zucker announced her plans to leave her position as Executive Director of the Los Angeles County Arts Commission on July 31, 2017.
LA County Arts Commission Exec. Director to Leave Position
The first bonds from Measure E, the Santa Clarita Community College District $230 million general obligation bonds approved by voters in June 2016, were sold on April 12, yielding $50 million to assist in funding a new parking structure at the college’s Valencia campus and two new buildings at its Canyon Country campus.
First Measure E Bonds Sold, Yield $50 Million
Upcoming arts and culture events in the Santa Clarita Valley.
SCV Arts Upcoming Events
Detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Missing Persons Detail are working together with South Pasadena Police Department in seeking the public’s assistance to locate a missing critical child, Andressian, Aramazd Jr.
LASD, SCV Search and Rescue Looking for Missing Boy
As part of National Bike Month, the city of Santa Clarita will host a week of bicycle-focused events and activities leading up to and after the world-class cycling race, Amgen Tour of California, presented by AEG.
City Hosting Free Bike Week Events Leading to Amgen Tour
Agenda for the City Council Committee Development Committee Meeting on April 25 at 4:00 p.m. in the City Hall, Mural Room.
April 25: City Council Development Committee Meeting
The Rotary Club of Santa Clarita and The Newhall Rotary Foundation graciously donated $2,700 to assist with the cost of re-flooring the Val Verde Samuel Dixon Family Health Center.
Rotary Club, Newhall Rotary Foundation Join Efforts to Remodel Val Verde Health Center
Sam Hilliard delivered a game-tying double in the ninth inning, but for the second straight day, the Lake Elsinore Storm won in walk-off fashion, 7-6, in 10 innings on Sunday afternoon at The Diamond.
Jethawks Force Extra Innings, Fall in the 10th
Valencia Crime Information and Public Safety Report for the Week of April 10-16, 2017
Crime Blotter: Grand Theft, Burglary in Valencia
Saugus Crime Information and Public Safety Report for the Week of April 10-16, 2017
Crime Blotter: Assault with a Deadly Weapon, Grand Theft Auto in Saugus
Castaic/ Val Verde Crime Information and Public Safety Report for the Week of April 10-16, 2017
Crime Blotter: Domestic Dispute, Grand Theft Auto in Castaic, Val Verde
1962 - SCV residents vote to connect to State Water Project, creating CLWA [story]
1986 - COC board votes to allow Argentine cliff swallows to nest forever on sides of buildings [story]
1974 - Gov. Ronald Reagan speaks at dedication of COC's first permanent building, the William G. Bonelli Instructional Resource Center [story]
Tonight on SCV NewsBreak, a social media post by a Valencia High School student sparked alarm. Plus, we round-up some great events happening in Santa Clarita this weekend. Watch these stories and more on tonight's edition of SCV NewsBreak.
SCV NewsBreak for Friday, April 21, 2017
The Santa Clarita Public Library has recently named Matthew Hortt as City Librarian. Matthew Hortt will be working with the city of Santa Clarita overseeing programming and operations for the Santa Clarita Public Library’s three branches in Canyon Country, Newhall and Valencia.
Santa Clarita Public Library Welcomes New City Librarian
In an off-market transaction, Colliers International has negotiated the $69.5 million sale of Gateway Village Shopping Center in Santa Clarita.
Valencia L.A. Fitness Shopping Center Sells for $69.5 Mil.
The Master's University is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. John Stead to the position of Senior Vice President and Provost.
Local Christian University Names USC Alumnus as New Provost
Jilin Bai, MD, PhD, a general practitioner affiliated with the Pacific Alliance Medical Center, has been named a 2017 Top Doctor in Santa Clarita, California.
Santa Clarita Physician Named a 2017 Top Doctor
Toll Brothers, American’s Luxury Home Builder, announces the sales center opening of Toll Brothers at Plum Canyon in Santa Clarita this Saturday, April 22.
Builder Selling New Homes in Plum Canyon
Annual event returns to celebrate children, families and reading.
April 29: Dia De Los Ninos, Libros at CC Library
Dedicated to fighting breast cancer through early detection and timely treatments, the Sheila R. Veloz Breast Center (a service of Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital) is offering a special cash price of $225 for digital 3D mammograms during the entire month of May.
Special Cash Price in May for 3D Mammograms
The Los Angeles Dodgers today unveiled a Jackie Robinson Statue at Dodger Stadium - the first statue in Stadium history - as part of Jackie Robinson Day celebrations on the 70th anniversary of Robinson breaking Major League Baseball's color barrier on April 15, 1947.
Dodgers Unveil Jackie Robinson Statue
Three pitchers combine to help Lancaster end series on high note.
Jethawks Shut Out Quakes in Joint Effort
Additional deputies will be on campus at the Valencia High School campus Friday morning after an alleged threat quickly spread on social media.
Deputies Look Into Valencia Student’s Online Post; No Charges
His parents remembered their son’s warm heart, caring nature and love of music, ahead of Friday evening’s memorial service for 19-year-old Kyle Carranza, of Saugus.
Family Shares Memories of Saugus Teen Before Memorial Service
Deputies set up a containment near Hart High School Thursday afternoon in an attempt to locate a bicycle theft suspect.
Bicycle Theft Suspect Leads Deputies Through Newhall
Women’s safety and self defense workshop with Bonnie Formia of Krav Maga self-defense.
April 22: Women’s Safety, Self-Defense Workshop
Since February 2, 2017, the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station Traffic Unit has conducted ten DUI Saturation Patrols between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m.
Santa Clarita DUI Saturation Patrols Net 18 Arrests
It is a hallmark of a civilized society to manage its waste appropriately. However, it is the hallmark of a morally civilized society to do so without exploiting its most marginalized members and making them bear the burden of detrimental health effects when they are the least likely to be able to defend themselves.
Environmental Racism | Commentary by Laurel M. Taylor
1994 - Valencia Mercedes co-owner Eddie Murray sets MLB record for switch-hit home runs in games (11 times) [story]