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Lake Merritt: The Jewel of Oakland

Lake Merritt: The Jewel of Oakland  
Thursday, February 21 @ 10 a.m.
Leaders: Sheryl Drinkwater and Susan Schwartz
Start: Oak Street entrance of Oakland Museum (1000 Oak Street
On this easy, mostly level 3.2-mile loop around Lake Merritt, we’ll see wintering birds and elegant architecture and hear some local history. But the main focus will be the green infrastructure that supports this watery jewel — actually a tidal lagoon — including rain gardens, native plantings, and a green roof. We’ll learn how citizen stewards have “adopted” spots along the lake and about U-Clean-It boxes that contain equipment for volunteers to use to clear debris from the shoreline. Susan and Sheryl, veterans of Friends of Five Creeks, also will talk about the fountains that oxygenate the lake to improve water quality, huge vortex filters that trap trash, recent restoration efforts, and possible effects of sea-level rise.
   Benches, water fountains, and restrooms are available along the route. Those who don’t want to walk the full loop, which may take 2½ hours, can get the gist of the narration in the first third and then return. Consider staying for an optional lunch at the museum cafe after the walk (no museum admission required). The museum will be open, however, for those want to visit the galleries.