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News from Watsonville Wetlands Watch
December 2009
Contents
The Watch Makes an Altar
Wetland Stewards Search the Heavens
Back to School Brunch
Docents Learn of Changing Sloughs
2010 Docent Training Program
Docent Extraordinaire
Flood Control a Hot Topic
You Can Help
Quick Links
Join Our Mailing List
The Watch Makes an Altar
 
WWW Altar and Four VolunteersThis year the Watch was invited to participate in the Pajaro Valley Arts Council Gallery's Mi Casa es Tu Casa art exhibit. The theme was inspired by Dia de Los Muertos and showcases the rich art and tradition of altar-making. The altar is an invitation to appreciate the nature and the spirit of our precious local treasure - the wetlands of Watsonville. Many thanks to volunteer altar-builders Cathy Gamble, Bob Lyons, Virginia Taylor and Bill Best. To learn more about the altar project and where to see it, click here.
Wetland Stewards Search the Heavens

Wetland Stewards Cooking with GenieOctober 16th was a moonless night, perfect for looking at the stars. Wetland Stewards Rudy Zauata, Miguel Ruan, and Fernando Paniagua, along with their teacher, Cara Sundell, spent the night at the Genie Dee - Ron Morin home in the Santa Cruz mountains. Each steward picked a favorite constellation and then Genie gave them clues for locating the stars in the sky. The boys also learned to use a GPS-based star-finding device, which they pronounced "Cool!" In the morning, they learned to make French toast. All decided they want to learn more about the stars and the solar system.
Back to School Brunch
 
Mark SilbersteinThis event, held in early October, featured our video, which gives supporters a close-up view of WWW activities and encourages them to make a five-year commitment of financial support. This year's speaker was Mark Silberstein, Executive Director of the Elkhorn Slough Foundation.
 
Silberstein lauded the Watch for its grassroots advocacy, focus on the wetlands, and for the quality of its environmental education and restoration programs. He then made his own pledge of support, earning him entry into the WWW's special group of "Northern Harriers." To learn more about the pledge program and the benefits of becoming a Northern Harrier, contact genie@watsonvillewetlandswatch.org.
Docents Learn of Changing Sloughs  
 
Kevin Fisher Giving Presentation
On November 11th docents were treated to a special talk by Kevin Fisher, wetland hydrologist and docent, on "Changing Sloughs." A full house listened to a comparison of how the sloughs of today differ from the sloughs of the past, and gained insights on the future of the sloughs. If you're interested in becoming a docent, see below....
2010 Docent Training Program  
 
Docents practicing slough water analysisThe 2010 Docent Training Program begins on Feb. 24th. Docent trainees will be treated to an inside look at the Pajaro Valley and its wide network of wetlands. Local experts will share the ecology, history, and restoration of the wetlands during this 7-week program, which includes Wednesday evening presentations and Saturday morning field trips. To learn more about it, click here.
Docent Extraordinaire  
 
Steve ZaslawSteve Zaslaw, docent, is our webmaster and electronic communications specialist. All trends point to increased use of computer media for communications, and Steve is our go-to guy for this. Steve played a key role in the upgrade of our website last fall, and since then has done regular updates to keep it current. He also researched and linked us with Constant Contact, our e-mail service to supporters, and each month puts our e-letter text into the CC format, so it is attractive to our readers. Steve has also spent many hours researching and testing a variety of software tools in search of the right tool for our online timesheet project. We can't thank him enough for all his support! For more, click here.
Flood Control a Hot Topic   
 
Bob CulbertsonBob Culbertson, WWW President, Jim Van Houten, Committee Chair, and other members of the Planning and Conservation Committee have been actively following the status of the Pajaro River Flood Control Project. There is a wide range of both costs and impacts being considered, and the Watch wants to be sure there is adequate public input.
 
In November, Bob sent a letter to the County Board of Supervisors on behalf of the Watch, requesting "continued transparency with respect to the current stage of the planning process and continued public involvement as proposed alternatives are moved forward". To see the text of the full letter, click here.
You Can Help!
 
Elementary school children working in WWW greenhouse
Your contribution to Watsonville Wetlands Watch supports our work to protect, restore, and foster appreciation of the wetlands. Please support us when you receive our year-end appeal in the mail, or you can contribute online by going to our website, www.watsonvillewetlandswatch.org. Your contribution is tax-deductible in accordance with IRS rules for non-profit organizations and is very much appreciated.
Watsonville Wetlands Watch advocates for wetland issues, educates elementary, middle, and high school students, restores degraded habitats, preserves what remains whole, and teaches appreciation for the unique beauty and life of the Pajaro Valley wetlands. In cooperation with numerous other agencies, we support studies of and planning for these sites.