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August 2023

people walk along a foggy beach

Mist-ical trails on the Sonoma Coast

Did you pack your jackets? It's foggy beach time on the Sonoma Coast. From Doran Beach to Gualala Point, you'll likely meet banks of damp, gray fog in the morning and evening. It's a natural feature, a chill experience and a great way to escape the summer heat.

Foggy beach trails
A river shuttle passenger holds up his arm to show his wristband

Ride the River Shuttle to Steelhead, Sunset beaches

Heading to the Russian River this weekend? The Regional Parks River Shuttle is a great alternative to taking a car, as parking lots at some of the more popular river parks close when they reach capacity. The shuttle runs on weekends every 30 minutes, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., between the El Molino High School campus in Forestville and Steelhead and Sunset beaches. An all-day adult ticket is $5; kids under 18 ride for free.

Buy River Shuttle tickets
A view from above of a green, open meadow surrounded on all sides by forest, under a blue sky, with a dark blue mountain range in the distance

Shape the future of Calabazas Creek Regional Park and Open Space Preserve

Share your vision for Calabazas Creek Regional Park and Open Space Preserve by taking a short survey. We're creating a master plan to guide the long-term development of this parkland (which isn't yet open to the public) and we want to hear from you. Would you prefer all multi-use trails or some trails for hikers only? Picnic sites? Camping? Let us know at SoCoParks.org/Calabazas.

Take the survey
smiling woman holds child with squirt gun next to kid splashing in water while holding on to floating obstacle course

Splash showdown: Healdsburg versus Spring Lake

While the kids head back to school in mid-August, the beaches at Healdsburg Veterans Memorial Beach and Spring Lake swimming lagoon remain open daily through Labor Day. Why not try both for some splashtacular late-summer water fun?


Healdsburg Veterans Memorial Beach

Swimming beach is open daily, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. (with lifeguards on duty). Swimming is free, no reservations needed, and loaner lifejackets are also available for free. The swim area is clearly marked and protected, but those wishing to paddle can bring their own boat or board and hand-launch it from the beach. Ample parking, restrooms and picnic areas are available.


Spring Lake Regional Park

Swimming lagoon is open daily, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. (with lifeguards on duty). Swimming is free, no reservations needed, and loaner lifejackets are also available for free. Take a whirl on the inflatable Water Park (tickets $10, per 2-hour session), or visit the Sonoma Burger Snack Shack for a slushie. Ample parking, restrooms and picnic areas available.


Rent a kayak or stand up paddleboard on the lake, available daily starting at 10:15 a.m. Reservations recommended, but walk ups are OK, too.

Rent a boat or SUP
Buy Water Park tickets
Poster for Gravenstein Apple Fair

Gravenstein Apple Fair returns to Sebastopol

Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Gravenstein Apple Fair on Saturday and Sunday, Aug.12-13, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., at Ragle Ranch Regional Park in Sebastopol. This outdoor festival features live music, local arts and crafts, food, kids activities and more. Regional Parks members get free parking!

Read More
video of fire rolling across grasslands at Tolay Lake Regional Park while firefighters monitor

Bringing 'good fire' back to Tolay

Parks staff, in partnership with the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria and Cal Fire Sonoma-Lake-Napa Unit, completed a prescribed fire at Tolay Lake Regional Park that successfully burned 80 acres of the park in order to reduce the risk of future wildfire, promote biodiversity and control invasive species. For more about how we use prescribed fire, visit SoCoParks.org/Fire.

How we use prescribed fire
dog with tennis ball in its mouth

Save the date for Spring Lake's Water Bark

The popular Spring Lake Water Bark returns for dog-friendly fun in September! On four weekends – Sept. 9-10, 17, 23-24, and Sept.30-Oct. 1 – bring up to three dogs to swim leash-free at the swimming lagoon (which will be closed to human swimmers for the season). Funds raised support 60+ dog-friendly parks by building trails, acquiring properties and enhancing the Regional Parks system.


Tickets are on sale now ($8-$15 per dog) or celebrate the park's 50th anniversary this year and get a season's pass "dog tag" ($50) for access to all Water Bark dates.

Buy Water Bark tickets

Special sponsorship opportunity

We've installed more than 100 new picnic tables at Spring Lake in honor of the park's 50th anniversary. These redwood tables can be found surrounding the swimming lagoon and at group picnic areas. If you're looking for an opportunity to celebrate a milestone birthday or anniversary, or remember a loved one, a picnic table sponsorship through the Parks Foundation is a unique gift that also supports the park. Contact Foundation Development Specialist Jodie Ellis with questions.

Sponsor a picnic table

Featured events

dog walking on leash

Hikes with Hounds: Crane Creek


On Friday, Aug. 18, 5-6:30 p.m., learn how to train the best four-legged hiking partner you could ever have. Dogs of all ages are welcome to join this 2- to 3-mile hike. No registration required.

More info
ace bandage wrapped around ankle

Outdoor Survival School


On Saturday, Aug. 19, Learn basic wilderness first aid while exploring Tolay Lake Regional Park. Register for one of two sessions: 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m. • 7-8:30 p.m.

Register 10:30 a.m.
Register 7 p.m.
oak galls on a branch

Amazing Oak Galls


On Monday, Aug. 21, join us for a 1.5-mile evening hike through Crane Creek Regional Park as we learn about the fascinating world of the oak gall wasp. 5:30-7 p.m.


Register

Choose your own adventure

Close up of a brown dog's nose text superimposed reads dog friendly


Woman pauses near large oak tree text superimposed reads seniors


Boy with kayak and paddle on beach text superimposed reads kids


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Sonoma County Regional Parks

(707) 565-2041

ParksMarketing@Sonoma-County.org

SonomaCountyParks.org

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