Last week, our very own King County Parks Foundation was featured in a full color, eight-page insert as part of the Puget Sound Business Journal’s series on corporate citizenship in the region. Download and read the pdf (3.6 MB) online or contact us for a hard copy!
The birds will be singing their praises for the Eastside Audubon Society when they arrive by bus at their upcoming “green birding” trip! This mobile event is designed to take avid and new bird watchers alike on an urban bird watching tour via the King County Metro bus system while at the same time reducing their collective carbon footprint. Participants will start at the Bellevue Park and Ride, board the same bus together and make several stops to experience different bird locations before they finish their tour at King County Park’s Marymoor Park, Bird Loop Trail.
Saturday, May 25
7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Meeting location: South Bellevue Park & Ride
The best part is that this tour is open to anyone that’s interested in bird watching – no experience necessary! To learn more and sign up for this backyard adventure, check out the event page for all the details.
King County Parks is excited to see this kind of interactive event take place; a great representation of the Eastside Audubon’s mission to protect, preserve and enhance natural ecosystems and our communities for the benefit of birds, other wildlife and people.
You read it here first! We are handing out rolling high-fives to any and all cyclists that cruise by one of our cheering stations on the annually celebrated Cascade Bicycle Club’s F5 Bike to Work Day happening this Friday. We are excited to see every make and model of bikes from recumbent to tandems and everything in-between – we know you unicycles are out there somewhere! If you’re shaking your head because your bike is still tucked away in the garage, it’s officially time to come out of hiding as thousands of folks from all over the county will make their way into work on two wheels and you just don’t want to miss this kind of fanfare. A cloudy forecast and a small chance of rain doesn’t hurt, either, for all you fair weather riders.
Catch your King County Parks high-five at:
- Burke-Gilman Trail at Logboom Park
- Cedar River Trail along SE Renton Maple Valley Rd at 140 Ave SE
We’ll be passing out King County Parks Regional Trails maps, goodies and you might just have a chance to win a really cool prize; the kind of prize worth bragging to your friends about.
Did you know?
The King County Regional Trail System is one of the nation’s most extensive multi-use off-road systems with over 175 miles of trails for bicycling, hiking, walking, and horseback riding. The RTS spans an area from Bothell to Auburn and Seattle to the Cascades.
This past Saturday, May 11, locals and trail enthusiasts gathered to celebrate the opening of the brand spankin’ new loop trail through Cedar Creek Park, an Ewok-like forest paradise nestled between Covington and Maple Valley in unincorporated King County.
Cedar Creek Park is actually 2 parks: King County’s portion, called Cedar Downs, and the City of Covington’s adjacent Cedar Creek Park. Together, the two parcels make a nearly 120 acre green space, featuring towering Cedars, Douglas Firs, and Maples along with two branches of the salmon-bearing Jenkins Creek, a pond, and more than 300 species of Rhododendrons. This green little corner of the world attracts eagles and herons, river otters, deer, and the occasional elk.
The new 1.5-mile-long loop trail is the result of funding from King County Parks’ Community Partnerships and Grants (CPG) Program to the Middle Green River Coalition and the Friends of Cedar Creek Park, which harnessed volunteer power and community resources to help get the loop completed.
The event also dedicated a memorial bench to Gary Patrick, a community member and former Maple Valley City Council Member who passed away in 2003. It was largely through Gary’s tireless efforts that the street end was protected as the trailhead access point on the Cedar Downs side of the park. A fitting tribute, the bench sits beneath a giant Cedar tree.
Congrats and many thanks to the Middle Green River Coalition, the Friends of Cedar Creek Park, and all the folks who helped make this trail happen – we couldn’t do it without you!
Couldn’t make it to the event and want to experience more Ewok splendor? Catch a quick video recap here or photos here. Get a park map and sign up to get involved on the Friends of Cedar Creek Park website.
We are excited to take part in the 34th annual Washington Women in Trades Career Fair this Friday at the Seattle Center’s Fisher Pavillion. This fair features potential employers looking to educate young adults and connect with tradeswomen to fill valued trades jobs such as welding, electricity or carpentry. It’s a great opportunity to engage with King County Parks to learn about the various special skills used by our field staff that operate and maintain all of our beautiful parks and trails.
And when we say that these skills are valuable, we mean that they are really valuable because not just anyone can walk in and install plumbing or mill wood out of thin air, right? Right! Take, for example, these testimonies and on-the-job photos from a couple of tradeswomen currently working for King County Parks. Corinna and Jessica make the job of milling wood look easy to the rest of us desk jockeys, but it’s their trained knowledge and specialized skills that make a challenging project like this one very satisfying.
Name: Corinna Fuentes
Position: Seasonal Field Staff
Time with KC Parks: 4 seasons
The parks system has taught me the craft of trail construction. Working in collaboration with various volunteer organizations often entails the construction of bridges, turnpikes, puncheons, stairs, boardwalks, and other structures that facilitate trail use. In order to obtain these materials our crews often mill; the trees are obtained from the property of King County and reused to serve King County Parks. The position also requires the ability to operate equipment and machinery. Mowing, trimming, edging, as well as the use of power tools are essential skills in providing safe and clean parks for public use. I find the dynamic use of all these skills to be very rewarding. The nature of the work is very satisfying in that you’re able to see the tangible results of a hard day’s labor and how it serves the community.
My favorite project so far? Building the boardwalk in Grande Ridge Park! As the 2011 season came to a close, we were only at the preliminary steps of gathering materials for the project. When I returned at the start of my next season, six months later, half of the boardwalk had already been built. Seeing the progression from start to finish and knowing the work that goes into such an undertaking made its completion a very proud moment.
In my role, an average day really depends on what work needs to be done. It may be spent hiking trails, brushing the paths to cut
away protruding growth, sharing lunch in the woods, and enjoying the outdoors. One may find themselves traveling to different park grounds, walking the sites and picking up litter, and making sure all areas are maintained for use. Another day might consist of trail work with a group of volunteers that share a passion for the outdoors. Every day offers a new task and keeps the season very interesting.
I would encourage other women to pursue a career in trades with King County Parks because it provides many opportunities. Many new skills are acquired through the job and it is dynamic in that each day entails a different kind of work. Through its coordination with volunteer groups and other King County employees, one is granted the chance to work with many different people. This also affords the opportunity to learn new skills from other sources. While working with Washington Trails Association, I learned the ins and outs about what goes into building a trail. Other King County employees furthered my knowledge in noxious weeds, operating power tools, and shared their knowledge gained from years of experience. King County Parks is an excellent opportunity to pursue.
We deal a lot with the public, so good people skills are a must. Organization, attention to detail, and working well in a team are all skills I use day to day. My favorite part about working with King County is my team. We have such a great unit, it makes coming to work everyday so much easier! Also, being outside during the summer is great too!
As tough as it was, bringing all of the materials down to build the boardwalk at Grand Ridge was great. Even though I wasn’t there to help actually build it, coming back the next season and seeing the finished product was awesome.
An average day starts with a meeting in the morning, just kind of to talk about what project you will be doing that day, then hopping in the truck and heading off to whatever location you’re designated to be at. We will either mow, fix trails, pick up garbage, trim back limbs, you know, anything to make the park users’ experience even better.
Working for King County has been such an important part of my life. Although it may seem intimidating to work with a bunch of guys, it’s really not. Doing some manual lifting, hiking and being outdoors is such a great way to spend your day! I would recommend to any woman, that working for King County is something they should seriously consider. After all, we could always use some more girls around here!
Name: Kelsey Bartlett
Position: Volunteer program assistant
Time with KC Parks: 2 weeks
I attended a career fair at UW and was interested in a position with King County Parks because it is related to my degree in
environmental studies. I really like the variety of my position because I’m not just sitting at a desk all day doing the same thing. Recently, I got to help lead a group of amazing volunteers on “Comcast Cares Day”. We dug up invasive plants at Marymoor Park, and the volunteers were a very motivated hard-working group! Anyone would be lucky to be welcomed into a position like mine. I get to work with all kinds of people doing things that they are passionate about, such as the condition and environmental health of our parks.