Wednesday, January 16, 2019

There's Still Time To Support Solano Land Trust!

You still have time to support the important work to preserve our shared land, and shared values. If you haven't already done so, please consider making an end-of-year contribution.

Your gift supports:

-Healthy land and clean water for wildlife and people
-Scenic views and open spaces between our cities
-Healthy, local food
-Safe recreational trails for all to enjoy
-Free and low cost community-based outdoor events
-Responsibly managed natural areas

Let's keep Solano County a desirable place to live, work and play!

Donate now to make a generous, tax-deductible year-end gift today. 

Gifts of all sizes are greatly appreciated!

If you've already sent in your donation, please know that we are deeply grateful.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Communing With Cattle: Interpreting Animal Behavior And Sending Positive Cues

As mentioned in our latest eVistas, Solano Land Trust is hosting a workshop on hiking with livestock on January 25th.

Venture into the world of animal behavioral science! We will be learning how to read and interpret cattle body language and recognizing how our actions can affect cattle behavior. As Citizen Scientists, Docents, and SLT staff and volunteers, we can lead the way towards minimizing stress for livestock and recreationists alike. Let's learn to safely share the trails!

Communing with Cattle: interpreting animal behavior and sending positive cues. 

Livestock and recreationists share the trails on over 130,000 acres of open space in the North Bay and San Francisco Bay Areas. All of Solano Land Trust's properties are managed with grazing. Grazing animals serve a valuable purpose on the rangeland but are often misunderstood. Cattle can be especially imposing to hikers due to their large size.

January 25th, Meet by 9:30 am at the Rush Ranch Nature Center; you will be done by 1:00 pm. This activity will be led by Jasmine Westbrook, SLT Project Manager. We will begin with a presentation and some discussion, and then we will take to the pastures to try to interpret the behaviors of cattle in the field. Please bring water and comfortable shoes for the outdoor portion. I recommend dressing in layers, as the Nature Center can get a bit chilly! The walk to the pasture will be easy to moderate difficulty level, depending on where the cattle are. If it is pouring rain, we may cancel the hike, but the rest of the event will take place. I plan to bring a lunch and I hope that some of you will join me!

RSVP by following the link:

Space is not limited for the January 25th event, but it will help us get a head count. This event is open to the entire SLT community. If you are a docent, the docent specific training will be February 2nd.  For questions about this event, email Jasmine Westbrook at THANKS! 

Looking forward to another learning adventure with you!

Monday, January 7, 2019

Giving Back To The Land You Love!

Join us the second Saturday of most months at 9:00 AM at Lynch Canyon Open Space Park.

This Saturday, January 12th, we will be removing the old boardwalk and cutting/ screwing boards for a new boardwalk!

We wrap up by noon and finish the work with a pizza lunch, provided by Solano Land Trust.
Make new friends, get some exercise, enjoy the outdoors and give back to the land.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Food And Community

A union worth celebrating

As we begin this new year filled with hope and opportunity, Solano Land Trust is proud to announce two newly-formed unions that took place at the end of last year.

One was a not-so-traditional wedding. The other is an alliance between Solano Land Trust and Fully Belly Farm. Both unions offer reasons to celebrate.

Solano Land Trust’s very own field operation’s manager, Jordan Knippenberg, recently wed Janvier Marie Velilla, farm harvest manager of Full Belly Farm. On a windy morning in October, Jan and Jordan, joined by a small group of friends, hiked up a mountain overlooking the Capay Valley. It was here where they made vows to honor their love, the land, and their communities. Jordan and Jan are so committed to the health of land and people that they even chose career paths that support this passion.  Little did they know, their shared values and partnership would bring their jobs together, too.

Solano Land Trust and Full Belly Farm, a certified organic farm in Capay Valley since 1985, has started our own partnership! As of January, Rush Ranch will serve as a location for members to pick-up the farm’s community-supported agriculture (CSA) produce boxes.

“I am excited to help join these two similar-minded agencies together,” says Jordan, who will deliver the weekly boxes to Rush Ranch from his home in Capay Valley. “I hope this collaboration strengthens our like-minded goals of supporting land, food, and people of this region.

Diversity has helped to keep the farm economically viable. With six owners — two of whom are second generation — and 80 employees, Full Belly Farm grows vegetables, fruit, herbs, flowers, and nuts. They also offer products from pasture animals.

Two peas in a pod

Solano Land Trust and the farm share common missions, which includes practicing sustainable management of the land. “The preservation of working landscapes is very important to us. One of our goals is to integrate farm production with longer-term environmental stewardship,” says Judith Redmond, part owner of Full Belly Farm.

Another important part of their job is to help people understand the importance of eating locally-grown, high-quality food, and to help subscribers connect their food with the farm. “After a while, it’s not just about the food; it’s a relationship with the place that grows it,” Judith says. This meaningful work, however, is getting increasingly difficult for small farm owners like Judy. “CSA’s are hard to keep going. Running a farm business in California is on the margin economically. It requires a lot of labor to farmland, and labor is more expensive here than in any other state in the country,” she adds.

Thanks to you, we are able to honor our commitment to support local agriculture and family farms. Oh, and when you subscribe to a weekly box of Full Belly Farm produce, you get the added advantage of visiting Rush Ranch once a week, where fresh air and a large open sky await you!

Learn more about Full Belly Farm and sign-up for a veggie box HERE.

Photos courtesy of Jordan Knippenberg and Full Belly Farm.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Land And People

Keeping the link alive

Together, we care for land and people.

Your support of this important work throughout the year ultimately accomplishes this mission. Not only is land protected, forever, but it can also be shared with the community for all to enjoy. People can find peace, exercise their bodies, and renew their spirits in nature. We trust that healthy land leads to healthy and happy people!

Sometimes, before young people can get out on the land, they may need help getting on their feet. This holiday season, Nicole Braddock, Solano Land Trust’s executive director, gave staff and board the chance to donate gifts to local foster kids who often fall through the cracks when they age out of the foster-care system at eighteen. We are proud to report that a small mountain of gifts, along with a jar of cash for gift cards, filled the couch in Nicole’s office in one day. The gifts and money were distributed by Heart 2 Heart Solano Youth Services, a program dedicated to supporting these teens.

Together, we provide opportunities for adults and kids alike to get outside in nature’s classroom. One way we do that is by offering a monthly kids' hike. Lucky for families, the next one is on Friday, January 4, when most kids are still out of school. In fact, Di Holokahi, our new engagement assistant, is having her daughter’s birthday party on the hike with some of her friends. Great idea, Di!

Thanks for all you do to support land and people of all ages.