The vision for Recreation Northwest is a “Community Connected To Nature”. One example is by bringing community organizations together to improve the places where we play.
Last year, we partnered with Phillips 66, who helped eradicate an enormous patch of invasive Himalayan Blackberries. The freshly cleared space formed a natural amphitheater of sorts, providing a new opportunity for Fairhaven Park.
Over the winter, Recreation Northwest began connecting with community members and local nonprofits, like Wild Whatcom, to gain insight into how they use natural spaces and how their students might benefit from a definitive space for educational activities. We heard resounding support for developing an Outdoor Classroom that our community can use.
Recreation Northwest and Wild Whatcom teamed up for a stewardship event and began focusing on shaping the open area into a purposeful outdoor classroom for active and passive learning.
Preparing for Fairhaven’s New Outdoor Classroom
Two of Wild Whatcom’s field mentors, Mabel Miller and Benjamin Schieber, brought a crew of enthusiastic Pacific Chorus Frogs (7th graders) to meet with Recreation Northwest’s Program Coordinator, Caleb Savage on March 26th.
After a brief walkthrough of the site, we discussed the plan for the day which included: clearing the outside perimeter of the Outdoor Classroom and eradicating invasive plants around the new classroom area, the Native Plant Restoration site and the Recognition Rock Bench. Learn how their stewardship efforts paid off!
Developing the Outdoor Classroom Space
Contagious enthusiasm was in the air as tools were distributed.
Clearing out the perimeter of the Outdoor Classroom area.
Using gravity to help roll down the logs. The logs were used to mark the outside perimeter of the classroom.
Benjamin, Wild Whatcom field mentor, making good progress clearing out debris around the edge of the area.
Eradication of invasive Himalayan Blackberries & Buttercup in Native Plant Restoration Area
Nolan in action digging up some invasive plants to help some Indian Plum plants thrive.
Mabel and Ian tackle some invasive blackberry plants to give the Snowberries room to breathe.
Silas, all smiles under the mask, as he successfully carries away an invasive blackberry root.
A crew in the afternoon tackled some invasive buttercups to improve our Native Plant site.
There was lots of fun during the day! As a group of students decide who to empty the bucket
Community Connected To Nature
A joyous group of individuals from Wild Whatcom and Recreation Northwest
The result of Recreation Northwest’s and Wild Whatcom’s stewardship collaboration? A rewarding day of progress!
Big thanks to Mabel, Benjamin and the Pacific Chorus Frogs from Wild Whatcom.
We’re always grateful for Ryan Robie, Interim Volunteer Coordinator at the City of Bellingham for providing the tools needed to get the job accomplished.
Support Recreation Northwest
This restoration project would not be possible without the generous support of your donations. Please consider making a donation to help continue our mission to protect the spaces where we live and play.
The City of Bellingham is situated on the ancestral and traditional homelands of the Coast Salish Peoples, whose tribal treaty rights we support and for whose enduring care of the lands and waters we are deeply grateful.
Recreation Northwest is a 501(c) 3 charity. Our mission: We teach the health benefits of nature, promote outdoor recreation, and steward the places where we play.
Todd Elsworth is one of the many “Mossy-haired lunatics roaming the dripping peninsulas”, described in “I’m Here for the Weather” by Tom Robbins. As executive director, he works to fulfill our mission to teach the health benefits of nature, promote outdoor recreation, and steward the places where we play.