SF Rec and Park to Participate California Coastal Clean Up Day

SAN FRANCISCO – The San Francisco Recreation and Park Department will be participating the California Coastal Clean Up Day hosted by the California Coastal Commission on Saturday, September 20th.  The event will be coordinated by the Department’s Volunteer Services Program team leading more than 100 volunteers to clean up the areas around Herons Head Park, a 22-acre open space and thriving wildlife habitat located in the City’s Southeast Sector.  Volunteers will receive instruction on how to collect waste data and clean up safely, and will be invited for tours of the Eco-Cener located at Hearons Head Park for information and programming on sustainable practices.

“We will be removing and documenting all waste collected at our project site because we know that this is not only good work but also important environmental work,” said Phil Ginsburg, SF Rec and Park General Manager.  “The data collected will be submitted to California Coastal Commission to help their efforts in proposing and implementing new policies that will reduce waste throughout our coast.”

Heron’s Head Park was born in the early 1970s, when the Port began filling the bay to construct what was to be the Pier 98 shipping terminal. The terminal construction never materialized, and the peninsula remained undeveloped. Over years of settlement and exposure to the tides, a salt marsh emerged, attracting shorebirds, waterfowl and aquatic wildlife.

In the late 1990s, with funding from the City and County of San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, the Port, the California Coastal Conservancy and the San Francisco Bay Trail Project, the Port undertook a major renovation of Pier 98.  The project enhanced and expanded the marsh by removing over 5,000 tons of concrete, asphalt, metal and other debris, created a tidal channel to improve circulation, and constructed upland trails, picnic and bird-viewing areas and a fishing pier. In 1999, the former Pier 98 officially reopened to the public as Heron’s Head Park, named for its resemblance – when viewed from the air – to one of its residents: the Great Blue Heron.

Funded by the 2008 Clean and Safe Neighborhood Parks Bond, the San Francisco Port in partnership with SF Rec and Park completed various improvements to the park, including an off-leash dog area, a dedicated bike lane leading up to the park, and other park amenities such as bicycle racks and picnic tables.  Today, SF Rec and Park and the Port have teamed up to offer Greenagers, a dynamic workforce development hands-on environmental education program for the young people living throughout different neighborhoods in the City.  More about SF Rec and Park’s Volunteer Services Program and Greenagers Program, please visit website: http://sfrecpark.org/support-your-parks/volunteer-program/.

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