The Museum on Main's annual Celebrate Community series has a new partner for the 2023 season, the Sunol Wilderness Regional Preserve, whose naturalists will be central to the programming this spring and summer in downtown Pleasanton.
The series will start with a naturalist from the Sunol Visitor Center presenting on the history of Chinese railroad laborers on the West Coast in two weeks, followed by the annual Family Day on July 8 and MoM's Reading Time on Aug. 9 focusing on the regional preserve in southern Alameda County.
"We feel very fortunate to be a part of a community with so many amazing organizations working to enrich the lives of Pleasanton and Tri-Valley residents. It is an honor to be able to partner with and help spotlight one of these great organizations each year through our Celebrate Community programming," said Rachel Brickell, the museum's director of education.
Managed by the East Bay Regional Park District, the Sunol Wilderness park is the ancestral homeland of the Taunan Ohlone People and a vast environmental preserve open to the public for hiking, backpacking, birdwatching, picnicking and other activities. Its Sunol Visitor Center reopened last fall after extensive renovations including new educational exhibits.
"The naturalists at the Sunol Visitor Center provide unique public programming for all ages including nature journaling, educational activities about the park's ecosystem, and wildflower walks in the spring. It's important for the park naturalists to acknowledge and educate the visitors on the history of the land," museum officials noted.
The series-opening pop-up program, "Chinese Laborers and The Transcontinental Railroad", will take place from 1-3 p.m. May 13 and feature photographs, census records, artifacts and activities designed "to educate visitors on the Chinese laborers who built the railroad and shaped the history of California," organizers said.
The "Celebrate Community: Sunol Wilderness Regional Preserve Family Day" will follow on the museum's front lawn from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 8, with programming for all ages highlighting the Sunol Visitor Center. "Activities might include learning about Ohlone-related objects and resources like tule, discovering fossils from the park's collection, and journaling about nature," organizers said.
Finally, butterflies will be the theme for the final event: "Celebrate Community: Sunol Wilderness Regional Preserve MoM's Toddler Reading Time" from 10-11 a.m. Aug. 9.
Attendance for each of the three programs is free. They will be held at the museum at 603 Main St. in downtown Pleasanton. For more information, visit www.museumonmain.org or call 925-462-2766.