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Santa Clarita CA
Today in
S.C.V. History
March 20
2012 - County supervisors approve 50-year operating agreement for Placerita Canyon State Park [read]

Let's Go Outside | Commentary by Evelyne Vandersande
| Thursday, Nov 29, 2012

When we were a smaller organization, the parties at the Placerita Canyon Nature Center used to be catered affairs. The food was pleasant, not too warm but expensive. It was always difficult and time consuming to set up, and I remember a certain holiday dinner where the caterer could not find our location and most of us took a turn waiting on the side walk to wave to the driver and stop him.

Things had to change when each docent training class was bringing 30 to 35 new recruits. We could not afford those dinners any more, so we decided to have pot-luck dinners.

The quality of the food improved drastically right away, the variety and the tasting experience became something we were really looking forward to. People started to exchange recipes and we decided to gather them into a book.

Who knew the nature business was also in the cooking business?

Our new “Nature Lover’s Cookbook” came from good times, good friends, good food, laughing and working together and it will be a treasure we will cherish and use for years.

It sells for $10 at the gift shop at the Nature Center.

You might have an interesting surprise when you have a look at the last pages … I will keep the suspense going; you will need to have a look.  The cover is protected by clear plastic, the format is great for keeping the book open on the kitchen counter, and the pages are glazed so they can be gently wiped off.

One very important point: The proceeds feed our animals; our recipes feed you.


Evelyne Vandersande has been a docent at Placerita Canyon Nature Center for 26 years. She lives in Newhall.



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  1. RonK says:

    Congratulations Evelyne on your first article!

  2. Vanessa says:

    Hooray for nature. Lets go outside indeed!

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