RiverWatch June 2017!

Great Blue Heron Associates go on a private tour.

The Great Blue Heron Associates are a distinguished group of supporters who share a passion and deep commitment to Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy by contributing a total of $1,200 or more within a calendar year. Participation in the Great Blue Heron Associates group is an opportunity to become more intimately engaged with our conservation and education efforts, meet others who share your environmental, community and educational values, and be invited to exclusive events throughout the year. Recently, a group gathered to take a hike guided by the River Park’s Executive Director Robin Rierdan of the new property acquired just two months ago. Because of supporters like these the River Park was able to save this land from development pressures and now we can restore it and build more trails for walkers, riders and hikers. Learn how your membership makes a far reaching impact on our community and environment by visiting our website or by contacting Cindy Collins, Membership & Volunteer Manager.

Our new 2017 membership levels showcase the impact your support provides, as well as highlighting the native plants and wildlife species found along the River Park Trail.

In addition, we're thrilled to announce our new recurring monthly membership option, starting at just $5 a month. This gives you the freedom and flexibility to make a gift now that supports the River Park all year long.

River Park Education Events

Girl Scout Daisy Troop 5927

Saturday, June 17th, Girl Scout Daisy Troop 5927 came to the Lakeside's River Park for a private group tour.

The girls hiked along the San Diego River Trail and were excited to learn all about the history of the River Park and native plant life that we observed along the way.

With the warmer weather there were a multitude of lizards who were no doubt helping to keep the insect population in check and the girls lost count of how many they spotted.

One of the perks of a private tour is that the girls were able to go off-trail into an area that is off limits to the public. While being very mindful of the natural habitats all around, the girls were able to stand in the San Diego Riverbed and learn about natural water tables and quality water testing.

A great time was had by all and it's no surprise their favorite part was enjoying the of view the beautiful pond from the overlook. Private tours are always available to those who would like to learn a little more about the River Park. Please contact Alisha Curtin or call 619-443-4770 to schedule your tour.


Heritage Christian Schools Robotics Club

Tuesday, June 6th, the homeschool students from Heritage Christian School's Robotics Club came to the Lakeside's River Park to have a private tour of our wetlands and bioswale.

Their 2017 competition topic has not yet been announced, however they know it till involve water in some capacity. The group was eager to begin their preliminary research so they decided to come on out to the River Park to see how we use natural plant life and terrain to filter and clean run-off water before returning it to the San Diego River.

They toured our coffer dam, bioswale and surrounding wetlands and were able to actively observe the filtration process as we had a steady flow of water in the system.

After the work was done, the kids capped off their visit with a hike along the high trail.

Private tours are always available to those who would like to learn a little more about the River Park, please contact Alisha Curtin or call 619-443-4770 to schedule your tour.


FREE Education Program

Heritage Turkeys

Saturday, July 15th @ 11:00am

Register by: July 7th

They're much more than a Thanksgiving staple! Heritage turkeys have an interesting place in San Diego's history.

Hear all about it, and even see the bird in person.

Register Here

Hike With The ED

Friday, September 22 @ 8:30AM

Register by: September 17th

Robin Rierdan answers your questions about hiking, the River Park, and our projects.

Meet at the San Diego River Trail at Channel Road - see it for the first time or get a new look at what you love.

Register Here


The River Park wins an award!

Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy is proud to announce that on May 11, 2017 we were honored for our restoration and design efforts by receiving a “2017 Hanson El Monte Pond Habitat Restoration & Flood Control Groundwater Recharge Project” from the American Public Works Association San Diego-Imperial Counties Chapter. Robin Rierdan, Executive Director, received this award. “We appreciate being recognized professionally for our outstanding work in environmental restoration,” said Rierdan. “We also want to thank Dudeck and Sierra Pacific. Their work on designing this project will enhance the lives of many people in the community”. The River Park is pleased to be the winner of Project of the Year under the Environmental category.


Featured Species: Coyotes, Canis latrans By Sally Nelson

The sightings of more and more wildlife on Lakeside’s River Park property confirms that the restoration project is meeting its goal of creating a healthy ecosystem capable of supporting a diverse population of insects, birds, reptiles and mammals. Admired for their adaptability and their remarkable comeback despite many campaigns in the past to eradicate them, coyotes are being seen by Park Patrol volunteers and River Park staff on a regular basis. Just this month two coyote pups were seen in the riverbed. Their mother was not sighted, but we are sure she was not far from them hiding in the native plant growth. Their nightly yipping and howling evokes images of the wild frontier, and their “song of the west” informs us that the next generation of highly efficient pest controllers is assured. Though they will eat insects, reptiles and some vegetation, the their favorite prey are those pesky species that reproduce prolifically--rabbits, squirrels, rats, gophers and mice. Without coyotes and other hunters at the top of the food chain, our homes, gardens and orchards would be overrun with destructive rodents. The presence of coyotes should be celebrated as we increase our appreciation of the vital role they play in keeping balance in a diverse environment. Since most of us are happy to have coyotes hunting rodents on our property there are concerns about pet encounters. It is vital that we observe practical approaches to coexisting peacefully. By feeding our pets inside, providing secure and covered pens for poultry and goats and keeping our trash cans securely closed, we can avoid extending unintentional invitations, and can appreciate this clever and important member of our community.


AmeriCorps NCCC is back at the River Park

The River Park welcomed another team, Gold 5, from AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) to the community. AmeriCorps is a youth service program that brings young people together from all over the country to do public service projects across our Nation. This is the 12th team to join forces with Lakeside's River Park Conservancy to help restore and revitalize the San Diego River. The team arrived on June 12th with nine hard working young adults. They have been camping at Blue Sky Ranch where they work one day a week and they also work one day a week at Silverwood Wildlife Sanctuary. At the River Park, the team has been hard at work doing a variety of projects. They have been trail building for our Park Patrol and Mounted Monitor volunteers at our newest property at Cactus Pond. But their highlight is working on the Bostonia house for the new San Diego River Science Field Station.

We thank them for their service here.

If anyone would like to host them with a home cooked meal, please contact Cindy Collins to make arrangements.


San Diego Riverbed and Lakeside Lands Culvert Clean-Up

Tuesday, June 13th, the Sheriff’s Department (Lakeside Substation), Marathon Construction, Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy, AmeriCorps NCCC members and other volunteers began the process of cleaning out a culvert that empties into the San Diego riverbed on the western end of the River Park's property.

This culvert not only is a pathway for the usual city trash that travels along with runoff, but it has become a commonly used shelter area for local homeless.

The result has been that there was quite a collection of debris and hazardous waste that was washing down towards the San Diego River.

Not only did we have environmental concerns, but several weeks ago, a fire broke out in the culvert and people were trapped making it a very dangerous location for anyone.

On the day of the clean-up, the Sheriffs brought in their HOT team to offer resources and aid to those who had to be relocated.

The clean up lasted all morning into the early afternoon and the result was a 40 yard dumpster filled nearly to the brim with debris and trash. It was quite an undertaking because of the terrain leading down to the culvert. The dumpster had to be located off-site and a crane lowered a smaller container that was transported to the dumpster every time it would become full.

Thanks to the hard work and dedication from everyone involved, we were able to get the job done and the enclosed culvert is now clean and safe.

We are working very hard to keep all of the culvert areas and River Park property clean and safe for all. If you see something suspicious, people who look out of place or see evidence of anyone attempting to set up camp, please don't hesitate to call our office. If you see something, say something! Call the office to report at 619-443-4770.


Once In A Blue Moon

Join us on Saturday, September 16, 2017 from 4:00-8:00pm

for our annual Once in a Blue Moon Gala!

"Science for our Kids"

Join us at the River Valley Equestrian Center in Lakeside for our annual Once in a Blue Moon Gala Auction & Dinner. This year's proceeds will go towards the construction of the San Diego River Science Field Station.

Why is the San Diego River Science Field Station important? Throughout San Diego and the state of California, the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) curriculum is becoming more important in all levels of education. Although coastal San Diego is a hub of biotech and other sciences, East County is not. Unlike students closer to the coast, our local students do not have access to STEM curriculum or mentors in this field.

Solution? We need a place where students can explore a field of study that exposes them to the joys of science and to critical questions they can help answer. They deserve a place where they can be inspired by the biology, fluvial geomorphology, chemistry, botany and hydrology of the San Diego River. The San Diego River Science Field Station will be that place.

The San Diego Trade Unions have generously agreed to donate all the labor to the project.

Our goal is to raise


for materials.

Want to become a Once in a Blue Moon Sponsor?

Download our Sponsorship Packet or contact our Events Coordinator!

Want to donate to our Auction?

Download our Auction Donation Letter or contact our Events Coordinator!

Buy Your Tickets Here


River Park Staff Changes

The River Parks Events Coordinator, Christina Deleon’s last day will be on Friday, June 30th.

After spending the last four years as the River Park’s Events Coordinator and Arundo Control Manager, Christina will be starting a new journey in her life as she moves up north to LA to pursue a path in Graphics.

Christina will be replaced by Thea Hanner, whom some of you may recognize from last year’s Blue Moon as the Events and Arundo Control Intern.

Though Christina will be leaving, she will still be around helping out as much as she can with the Blue Moon and various future projects.

We wish Christina the best in her new adventures and we welcome Thea to the team full time!

Please update your address book...we have new emails!

Robin Rierdan, Executive Director Robin@lakesideriverpark.org

Cindy Collins, Membership & Volunteer Manager Cindy@lakesideriverpark.org

Alisha Curtin, Outreach, Volunteer & Safety Coordinator Alisha@lakesideriverpark.org

Robert Doty, Field Superintendent Robert@lakesideriverpark.org

Thea Hanner, Events & Arundo Coordinator Events@lakesideriverpark.org

Karen Anderson, Staff Accountant accounting@lakesideriverpark.org

For general information regarding the River Park and trails please direct all inquiries to: