Sheer Madness in LBA Woods

The safest way to carry your sheers during an LBA work party as demonstrated by two volunteers (center, left). Thanks everyone for a great turnout today–half seen here after a frenzy of blackberry hacking and scotsbroom wrenching.

Join us Wednesday, October 18, from 9:30-12 noon, for Work Party #8. Follow the signs from the main (east) LBA Park parking lot. We’ll be continuing blackberry and scotsbroom work. Tools, gloves, and snacks provided.

Hope to see you in the woods!

Work Parties #7 and #8

WORK PARTIES ARE BACK!
Saturday, October 14 – 10:00am-1:00pm
Wednesday, October 18 – 9:30am-12:00pm

These Himalayan blackberries were delicious this summer but alas, they are an invasive species taking over the native habitat in the LBA Woods. Join Olympia Park Stewardship staff, Friends of LBA Woods, and your fellow volunteers to work on eradicating more of this prickly vine. Come when you can, stay as long as you want.

Long pants and sturdy shoes required. Gloves, tools, water, and light snacks are provided. Service-hour forms will be signed by Park staff or Friends of LBA Woods.

The park is located at 3333 Morse-Merryman Rd. SE. Follow the signs to the LBA Woods trailhead, south of the main (east) parking lot, and to the work site. Restrooms are a ten-minute walk from the worksite. Plan accordingly! This is a rain or shine event.

Awards for Friends of LBA Woods

 

Saturday August 19–The Friends of LBA Woods received two awards yesterday at the volunteer appreciation picnic hosted by the Park Stewardship Program staff in Priest Point Park. The program supervisor, Sylvana Niehuser, presented the awards and thanked the Friends of LBA Woods not only for its work in the LBA Woods but also its campaign to establish a Metropolitan Park District in Olympia to help fund our park needs for the future.

While the Friends of LBA Woods is the formal name of the stewardship group that has adopted the LBA Woods (and is spearheaded by Bob Wadsworth), the friends of LBA Woods includes the hundreds of members of the LBA Woods Park Coalition, its leadership team; and all the wonderful members of our community who advocated for saving the LBA Woods, who have volunteered at our work parties, and who have served as unofficial caretakers of the woods for years.

Kudos and thanks to every friend and to the Park Stewardship staff, City Council members, City Staff, PARC Foundation, too!

“Philosopher” Comes to LBA Woods

 

Great news from the Olympia Arts Commission!

At the July 13, 2017 meeting of the Olympia Arts Commission, Commissioners reviewed the proposed gift of artist Kevin Au’s Philosopher (above), a steel sculpture that was part of the 2016 Percival Plinth Project. It has been the recent practice of the Arts Commission to place Percival Plinth competition winners in public spaces–often parks.

The Commission recommended placement at LBA Park, just outside the entrance to the LBA Woods, pairing the organic feeling of the work to the natural surroundings of the site. City Manager Steve Hall accepted the proposal on August 1. We will post more information about the installation of this sculpture in the coming weeks.

“Philosopher” by Kevin Au will be placed at the east entrance of the LBA Woods (as shown in this mock-up. Larger image coming soon!)

Says Au of his work: My sculptures are made with sheet metal. So far, I have utilized steel, stainless steel, galvanized steel, and aluminum. I would characterize my works as modern abstract organic. I like to keep the lines simple and fluid. I use computer 3D drafting to design the sculptures and develop patterns from it. The patterns are then transferred to metal, assembled, welded, grinded, and finished. Click here for more information on sculptor Kevin Au.

Thank you Dr. Au, Olympia Arts Commission, OPARD, and Steve Hall for bringing this beautiful artwork into the park. It will set just the right tone for a contemplative walk in the woods or a twisting and turning ramble on the woodland trails.

Berries in the LBA Woods

One of the joys of living in the Pacific Northwest is being able to forage during a long hike or walk. The LBA Woods is full of berries right now. Most are native, but not all make great eating off the vine. Here’s a quick guide to what you’ll find on the trails now (late July-early August).

Tall Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium). They look like grapes, but not recommended for eating. Polar and McKinnon notes these native berries were a traditional and potent antidote for shellfish poisoning and warns against consuming them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Salal (Gaultheria shallon). This native berry can be eaten fresh, dried, or perserved as jam. An acquired taste if eaten off the vine; close to grape jelly if preserved.

 

Bald-hip Rose (Rosa gymnocarpa). These small oval fruits are edible, but not recommended as the seeds contain gut-irritating hairs.

 

Himalyan Blackberry (Rubus armeniacus). A very successful (invasive) non-native berry just beginning to ripen now. Delicious!

 

Thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus). These delicate native berries are at the end of their season. They are not sold commercially so wild is the only way to taste them.

State Could Cut LBA Woods Grant Funds

One million dollars of LBA Woods acquisition funds are in the state capital budget and these funds are on the line.

The Olympia Parks and Recreation Department (with support from the LBA Woods Park Coalition) applied for a $1million grant to help with acquisition of the “Trillium” portion of the LBA Woods. The grant funding is through the Washington Wildlife and Receation Program (WWRP), which is funded through the state’s Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO). This million dollars may be cut out of the state’s $4.17 million capital construction budget unless the WA Senate approves it. 

The budget (HB1075) passed earlier in the House (92-1). Now it’s up to the senate to pass the budget and sent it to Governor Inslee’s desk for signing. Your call to these senators could make the difference. Each has a piece of Thurston County in their districts:

  • Senator Randi Becker (360) 786-7602
  • Senator John Braun (360) 786-7638
  • Senator Tim Sheldon (360) 786-7668

Please let them know you care about the LBA Woods and urge them to pass the budget with the critical funding for the acquisition of parkland in the state capitol and also the acquisition and improvement to parklands across the state. We are lucky in Olympia in that we have the Metropolitan Park District to help support our parks; we will not lose the LBA Woods if this funding is not granted, but it will make our MPD dollars go further in our parks citywide.

Further Clarification on Rezone

Clarification: Rezoning of “Bentridge” parcel of LBA Woods

Olympia’s Planning Commission mailed a public-hearing notice on a rezoning of the “Bentridge” parcel of the LBA Woods to residences within 500 feet of current LBA Park and the LBA Woods.

Unfortunately, the notification was confusing and made it appear as though the LBA Woods Park Coalition and our supporters lost our campaign to save the LBA Woods from development. This is not so. Thanks to overwhelming public support for preserving LBA Woods, the City purchased the vast majority of LBA Woods (133 acres) for park and open space purposes and has no intention of using this land for residential development.

The confusion lies in the City of Olympia’s zoning rules. Oddly, the city has no “open space” or “parks” designation for any of its parks. The parkland adopts the surrounding neighborhood zoning as the default zoning. For instance, Watershed Park, Priest Point Park, and the original LBA Park itself are all zoned R 4-8, which means the land was originally zoned for 4 to 8 residences per acre and maintained that zoning despite the fact the land is parkland.

 

The LBA Woods parcels—“Trillium/Ashton Woods” and “Bentridge”—had existing zoning that is codified in the city’s zoning code.  The “Trillium/Ashton Woods” parcel was already zoned R4-8; the “Bentridge” parcel was already zoned as a “Neighborhood Village,” which included an approved master plan for the development of 501 homes. In order for the city to plan a public park on this parcel, the property must be rezoned or future development of the site would have to be consistent with the Neighborhood Village master plan.

Again, since there is no “parks” or “open space” zoning, the majority of the parcel will be rezoned to the R 4-8 of the surrounding neighborhood, of the Trillium parcel, and of existing LBA Park.

The areas zoned R 4-8 are, in fact, saved parkland and, despite this zoning, they will not be developed. These areas were acquired with park funding.

However, when the City of Olympia acquired the 71.86-acre “Bentridge” parcel, it purchased 59 acres with parks funding to be used as parkland and a 10-acre portion with general funds to be used as a mixed-use residential/neighborhood center site, and 2.8 acres with transportation impact fees to be used for the proposed Log Cabin extension road. The 10-acre neighborhood center site fronts Boulevard Rd. and are referred to by many park goers as the “old-growth scotsbroom field.” The City Planning and Development department is proposing to rezone this acreage to RM-18 (Residential Multifamily, 18 per acre) in order to accommodate medium-density housing and possible neighborhood center (possibly in the fashion of the Wildwood Center anchored by Vic’s Pizzeria and Spud’s Market).

Though this prairie-like area is overgrown with scotsbroom (an invasive weed) it also supports native fruit-bearing bushes which provide food and habitat for songbirds.  The LBA Woods Park Coalition hopes that future development designs will take this into account and adequately plan for the transition between the open and forested habitats.

The area shown as R 6-12 and outlined in blue on the map is existing zoning of a land adjacent to but outside the Bentridge parcel.

The area shown as RM-18 (outlined in the yellow dashed line) is the 10-acre area proposed for residential multifamily zoning that may be developed in the future.  Again, this portion of the property was purchased with the general funds (not park money or transportation impact fees).

The map also shows the alignment of a proposed roadway known as the “Log Cabin Extension Road.” The LBA Woods Park Coalition’s position on this road has been to request the City of Olympia maintain openness to evaluation changes to traffic patterns and reasonable alternatives to the road prior to committing any resources to design or construction of the road.

For several years, the LBA Woods Park Coalition has tracked this plan, which would have significant impacts on the woods. We have asked the city for a complete and detailed evaluation of its need and to consider reasonable before undertaking this project.

 

The public hearing on this rezone is Monday, June 10th at City Hall at 6:30p.m. in Room 207.

Please bring your questions and concerns!

 

 

 

Public Hearing on July 10

Confused?

The Community Planning and Development department mailed this July 10 public-hearing notification to residents in neighborhoods surrounding LBA Park and LBA Woods. Unfortunately, it is very confusing and misleading. It makes it appear we LOST the LBA Woods to development. This is not so.

Our understanding is that Olympia has no official “parks” designation for any of its parks and simply adopts the surrounding neighborhood zoning as the default zoning. Go figure! So—the R 4-8 (4-8 residential units per acre) you see on the notification (posted here) is the current zoning of the neighborhoods surrounding the LBA Woods. R4-8 applies to both the “Bentridge” and
“Trillium” parcels.

The areas zoned R 4-8 are, in fact, saved parkland.

The area zoned R6-12, however, designates the 10 acres the City did acquire (the “old growth” scotsbroom field) with non-park money to develop for higher-density housing and possible neighborhood center.

We are currently working with the Parks Dept. and Planning and Development Department to request they issue an official clarification asap on this unfortunately confusing notification.

Meanwhile, the public hearing on this rezone is Monday June 10th at City Hall at 6:30p.m. upstairs in Room 207.

Jeannine Roe for City Council

The Friends of LBA Woods invites you to support the re-election of Jeannine Roe to Olympia City Council Position 6. The election is August 1; ballots go in the mail in mid-July.

Jeannine has been not only a friend of the LBA Woods but also a friend of Olympia and tireless advocate for what is good in our community. Since 2009, she has served on Olympia City Council with competence, common sense, and compassion. She is the single-most qualified candidate—and the only one with legislative experience in city and state government.

Jeannine was the first council member who embraced our vision of LBA Woods as a park rather than housing developments. She worked tirelessly and effectively with our coalition, with her fellow City Councilmembers, City Staff, Parks Department, and other key decision makers to develop the strategy to help us save the woods and to make the necessary compromises to do so.

We are deeply grateful to Jeannine Roe for her steadfast commitment to balancing the many and often conflicting needs of our rapidly growing city. Protecting our natural landscapes while accommodating population growth is one of the greatest challenges we face in the coming years; Jeannine is our smart-growth candidate and we need her voice on City Council.


Follow Jeannine on Facebook


Jeannine’s experience on City Council is extensive. Her current assignments include serving as chair, member of, or liaison to:

  • Community Investment Partnership (CIP)
  • Finance Committee
  • General Government Committee, Chair
  • Washington Center Board
  • LOTT Board of Directors – Alternate
  • Olympia Region Clean Air Agency -Alternate
  • Parks & Recreation Advisory Committee
  • Parking, Business, Improvement Area (PBIA)
  • Thurston Thrives Coordinating Council
  • Visitors & Convention Bureau

Come to Jeannine’s Campaign Kick-Off 

Saturday, June 24 at 5 PM – 8 PM

3235 Eastland Circle SE, Olympia


Jeannine has lived Olympia for nearly all her life. She graduated from Olympia High School and has a degree in education from the University of Puget Sound. Before becoming a broker/realtor with Greene Realty Group, she worked for the Washington State Senate – Senate Democratic Caucus, Executive Assistant to Majority Leader, Senator Sid Snyder and Majority Leader, and Senator Lisa Brown. In addition to her legislative experience, she was a constituent relations assistant to Governor Gary Locke.

While raising her two (now adult) daughters, Jeannine committed her volunteer time to serving as an advocate for abused and neglected children through the CASA program (Court Appointed Special Advocate), as a Girl Scout leader, Pioneer Elementary School PTA board member Washington Middle School Booster Club president, and Olympia High School Parent Connection Board president.

Please join us in supporting Jeannine Roe for City Council.

Brian Faller, Bonnie Jacobs, Deb Jaqua, Cristiana Figueroa-Kaminsky, Maria Ruth, Bob Wadsworth (Friends of LBA Woods)

 

 

 

 

Join Us Saturday May 20 at 10 a.m.

Start your Saturday in the Woods! Join us for Work Party #6 from 10 a.m. to noon to rid a section of trail of invasive Yellow Archangel. This is not strenuous work–just hand-pulling with trowel assist. Gloves, tools, and snacks provided. Work site is easily accessed through the “Wilderness” neighborhood–the same location as the last two work parties. (From Boulevard Rd. SE, turn east onto Wilderness Dr., then turn left on Highline Dr. Proceed to 4000 “block” and park along street. The photos here will help guide you.

Look for  green Frontier Dr./Highline Dr. street sign. Trailhead is to the left of this sign.

If you are coming from the main LBA Woods Park parking area, please follow the signs and yellow flagging (below); the walk to work site is 10-15 minutes.

Everyone is welcome!

Under 18 years old? You must have a Waiver and Medical Alert (one-page form) signed by and adult. We will have these forms on hand, but you can also download/print them from the Olympia Parks website and fill them out beforehand: http://olympiawa.gov/city-services/parks/volunteering.aspx
Under 14? You must be accompanied by a parent/adult.

The Friends of LBA Woods will be hosting more work parties this summer and guided walks to introduce you to lesser-known trails to avoid construction site trail closures. Stay tuned for dates!

Work Parties #5 and #6

The Friends of LBA Woods and these lovely Serviceberry flowers (now blooming!) invite you to join us at our work parties next week. We will continue our good work banishing the invasive Yellow Archangel from along the trail near the Wilderness neighborhood entrance to the park.

We are hosting our first-ever mid-week work party Wednesday May 17 from 9-11 a.m. We’ll  host another party Saturday May 20 from 10-12 noon. We’ll provide gloves and trowels (though the work in mostly hand pulling).

If you would like to pull archangel on your own–even for just 15-20 minutes during your walk in the woods any other day–please contact Maria Ruth (Friends of LBA Woods) for instructions. Every little bit helps! E-mail: mariaruthbooks@comcast.net

DIRECTIONS TO THE WORK SITE: From Boulevard Road SE Olympia, turn onto east onto Wilderness Drive. Turn left on Highline Drive., which becomes Frontier Drive at the work site. Park on the street and follow signs to the trail and work party. Signs to the work site will be posted along the trail from the main parking lot in LBA Park off Morse-Merryman Rd.

Work Party #4 Saturday at 10 a.m.

Join the Friends of LBA Woods and Olympia Parks’ Stewardship Program on Saturday April 29 from 10 a.m. -1 p.m. Rain or Shine!

We’ll be removing invasive and oh-so aggressive Yellow Archangel from along the trail near the entrance from the Wilderness neighborhood. If we have enough volunteers, we’ll tackle some invasive holly as well.

Tools, gloves, snacks, and camaraderie provided! Volunteer service forms will be signed! Bring a  kneeling pad or cushion if you need one. (Archangel is a low spreading ground cover).

Please note that due to the construction of the water tower and access road, many of the trails through the woods are temporarily closed. Please use the southern entrance from the Wilderness neighborhood.

DIRECTIONS: From Boulevard Road, turn onto east onto Wilderness Drive. Turn left on Highline Drive., which becomes Frontier Drive. at the work site. Park on the street and follow signs to the trail and work party.

Or…get map from this link Google 4101 Frontier Dr. SE Olympia (this is the address of the house across from the trailhead).

Questions? Please contact Maria Ruth, Friends of LBA Woods, mariaruthbooks@comcast.net

Construction, Creation, and Eradication

 

Construction: There is a lot of change coming to the LBA Woods in the coming months. Construction of the city’s new water tower will begin in this area on Monday, April 17. The five-acre city-owned construction site has been staked and flagged. During the construction, please be aware that the construction area, which is on the former “Trillium” section of the woods will be fenced off by orange construction fencing as plants are removed in advance of tree clearing. Some of the trails will be closed temporarily for safety.

 

 

 

Creation: The boundary of our new park has been officially marked with these Park Boundary signs. Just think: this could be a “Lots for Sale” signs (800 of them!) if we hadn’t save the woods! Boundless thanks to you all!

 

 

More Creation: Look at what’s blooming in the woods (April 13). Here’s a gallery of native flowering plants, small trees, and sword ferns (they call the new growth “fiddleheads” but don’t they look like sylvan seahorses?)

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Eradication: And there’s the energetic, aggressive, misguided Yellow Archangel. This non-native invasive ground cover has taken over a large patch of the woods near the entrance from the Wilderness neighborhood on Frontier/Highline Drive. It is smothering native bleeding heart, ferns, and whatever else is underneath it. We know many park goers have been itching to get rid of this weed; now that this land is official park property–it’s ours! The Friends of LBA Woods will be hosting a work party on Saturday, April 29, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to tackle this weed with trowels and hand clippers. We’ll have some tools and gloves on hand, but feel free to bring your own. We are dedicated to eradication without using herbicides and so will need all the weed warriors we can get!  More details on the work party coming soon!

FAQ on Water Tower Construction

This spring and summer, the City of Olympia will be installing a 5.2-million-gallon water tank (reservoir) on a 5-acre parcel of land purchased previously by the City in the LBA Woods.

 

Why do we need a new water tower if the 800 homes once planned for “Trillium” and “Bentridge” developments are not being built?

There is an existing storage deficit of 1.2 million gallons of water that is needed for fire protection and storage during emergencies or power outages on Olympia’s east side.

The new reservoir will supplement the existing Hoffman Reservoir and support future potential growth for 20 years or more.

The existing Hoffman Reservoir needs to be taken off line for necessary maintenance. In order to do this, the new Log Cabin Road Reservoir must be constructed and put into service so there is adequate water and pressure to the area while the Hoffman Reservoir is not available.

Why this site?

It is the only undeveloped, high point in the area that meets water system needs and that can provide necessary water storage capacity on Olympia’s east side

Didn’t the LBA Woods Park Coalition fight to keep the water tower out of the park?

When the LBA Woods Park Coalition launched its campaign to save the LBA Woods, we were told the 5-acre water-tower project was not negotiable. Nonetheless, members of our coalition met with the Public Works department on several occasions to negotiate. While we were not successful in eliminating the tower altogether, Public Works did agree to adjust the siting of the tower to and to re-align and narrow the access road and pipeline from Morse Merryman Rd. to avoid impact to the designated wetlands and their buffers as the original design would have. The newly designed pipe connection is shorter and therefore will likely result in lower construction costs. The elimination of multiple 90-degree turns in the pipeline may also reduce operating costs which, in the long run, will lower greenhouse gas emissions due to lower pumping requirements.

 

How big will the water tower be?

It will be 140-feet tall and 80-feet in diameter. It will look similar to the Hoffman Reservoir located at the end of Hoffman Court.

 

How will water get to the tower?

Via a 2,220 foot 16-inch diameter water pipeline that will run from supply and distribution pipes in Morse Merryman Rd. to the reservoir site. This pipeline will be installed beneath a new, 42-foot-wide clearing limit and 12-foot wide gravel access road which will be used by service vehicles and as a pedestrian pathway after construction.

 

Will the east-end (main) parking lot off Morse Merryman Rd. be closed during construction?  

No.

 

What will be the hours of construction?

Monday-Friday 7:00a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

 

Will noise from the project be a fairly constant disturbance during the project? 

The amount of noise generated by the construction will vary throughout the life of the project.  Initially, there will be noise associated with the tree removal (chain saws) and clearing and grading (bulldozers) of the access road, overflow pond, and tank site.  Construction of the water main and installation of the power conduits will create noise as a backhoe digs the trench and the water main is installed.  Dump trucks will bring in the backfill material to fill the trench.  Later in the summer, the noise will be more intermittent as trucks haul in the concrete and steel for the tank fabrication. During painting of the tank, compressors and abrasive blasting can be noisy.

 

What is the expected length of the active (noisy) part of the project? 

The noisy part which includes the clearing and grading of the site and water main installation will last about three or four months from about April through July.

 

Will there be signage installed to redirect walkers on impacted walking trails?

Yes, signs will be posted and people will be redirected to the new trail route during construction.  When the trails are in the process of being re-routed, there may be dead-ends until the new route is establish.  Upon completion of the project, trails will be rerouted so that there won’t be dead-ends.

 

Will any trails be closed?

At various times during construction the trails will have to be temporarily closed for safety. Temporary chain-link fence and orange mesh fence will be installed along the access road and will block some contiguity of access within the site.

 

How will trees and plants be protected during construction?

Root Protection Zones will be established around trees. Temporary fencing will be installed to protect trees within these zones. and fence will be installed around trees. This fencing will be maintained throughout the construction and grading and will not be removed until final landscaping is in progress.

 

Will wetlands be protected?

Yes. During construction, silt fencing will be installed around wetlands and their buffers.

After construction, wetland buffer areas disturbed during construction will be replanted with native plants to match the natural plant communities in the LBA Woods.

Plans call for 350 bareroot trees (Douglas-fir, Western Redcedar, Western Hemlock, Big Leaf Maple) will be planted in disturbed areas. And 1,350 plug or potted shrubs (Salal, Salmonberry, Oregon Grape, Osoberry, Red-flowering Currant, Evergreen Huckleberry, Oceanspray, Clustered Wild Rose, and Sword Fern) will be densely planted.

All obtained plants will have been nursery grown in the Puget Sound area. Planting will be done in the fall season to ensure adequate moisture during plant establishment.

If you have additional questions, please send them to us via our contact page or Facebook page.

Foul-Weather Friends of LBA Woods!

More than 40 volunteers worked in the LBA Woods on Saturday. Most of them are here, enjoying hot cider and donuts at the end of the “party.”

Thank you to all our “foul-weather” friends who braved the chilly, wet weather on Saturday during our work party. We had more than 40 volunteers in the LBA Woods working to remove invasive Scotsbroom and Himalayan blackberry as part of our forest restoration effort.

In addition to a cadre of neighbors, park lovers, and LBA Woods Coalition leaders, we had an army of Olympia High School biology students earning their service-hour requirements for the semester. We could not have accomplished this (below) without these cheerful, hard-working students. And look–here is what they helped remove from the woods:

A fist-pumping Friend of LBA Woods is dwarfed by Mount Scotsbroom–the work of Work Party #3 in the LBA Woods. Yay Volunteers!

December 10 Work Party #3

Please join the Friends of LBA Woods for our third work party on December 10 at 10 a.m.

We will be continuing our work to remove invasive Scotsbroom to help restore native habitat.

Tools, gloves, snacks, and camaraderie provided!

Anyone under 18 must have the Waiver and Medical Alert signed by a parent or guardian in advance or on the sign-in roster at the project work site. Go here to download and printout the waiver: http://olympiawa.gov/city-services/parks/volunteering.aspx

Students under 14 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

High school students can earn 3 hours toward their service requirements if they bring their service form to be signed.

Park at LBA Park parking lot located at 3333 Morse-Merryman Rd SE. Follow signs directing to work party site. Sturdy shoes/boots are a must!

This event is sponsored by the Olympia Parks Stewardship Program and the Friends of LBA Woods.

Work Party #3 on December 10

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Please join the Friends of LBA Woods on Saturday, December 10, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to continue our stunningly effective work removing invasive Scotsbroom and Himalayan blackberry.

Volunteers at our last two work parties cleared huge areas of these weeds from along the trails just inside the eastside entrance. Park visitors are noticing the difference and I am sure the native trees are evapo-transpiring sighs of relief!

From the eastern parking lot in LBA Park (3333 Morse-Merryman Rd. SE), just follow the mulched path to the gate into the woods. Signs will be posted and volunteers will be on hand to show you the way.

Everyone is welcome! Tools, gloves, snacks, tool-free tasks, rest breaks, camaraderie, and fun are all provided. Drop in when you can, stay as long as you like (but please sign in/check in first). You must wear close-toed shoes to work!

Children under 13 are most welcome but must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Unaccompanied minors 14-17 must have a waiver signed a parent or guardian. We will have waivers on hand, but you can fill one out in advance here: Click on the “Waiver and Medical Alert” tab on the left.

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Scotsbroom Be Gone!

This event is sponsored by The Friends of LBA Woods stewardship group and the City of Olympia Parks Stewardship staff.

 

Ribbon Cutting Saturday in LBA Woods Park at 10

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It’s the day we’ve all been waiting for–the celebration of the success of our community’s campaign to save the  LBA Woods! With the city’s unanimous vote on September 27 to purchase the second parcel, Olympia’s future includes a new legacy park.

Please join us on Saturday, October 22, for a ribbon cutting with Mayor Cheryl Selby and Olympia Parks Director Paul Simmons. We’ll have coffee, Lattin’s apple cider and fresh donuts, ebullience, gratitude, a special guided trail walk. Everyone is welcome–dogs on leashes, too!

The event will be held near the kiosk at the edge of the ballfields in LBA Park. Look for the balloons and signs on Morse-Merrryman Rd. across from McKenny Elementary School. The parking lot may be full, but we have permission from the school to park in their lot. It’s a short walk along a walking path into the woods.

Following the festivities, we’ll move right into our trail walk and work party at 11 a.m. We’ll supply tools, gloves, and liability waivers–fun!–and continue our eradication of invasive scots broom and blackberry. This is your time to experience the wonder of a weed wrench!

It’s a busy time of year, so feel free to stop in the for the ribbon cutting ceremony at 10 a.m.. Come by for a cup of coffee! Run past and grab a donut! Come by at 11 a.m. for the guided walk or to join the work party.  Stay until you’re done or 2 p.m.

Be a part of our grand day in the LBA Woods–the trees and we want to thank you!

NOTE to Minors: All children are welcome, but must be accompanied by an adult if under age 13. Children ages 13-17 can work solo, but must have a liability waiver signed by an adult. The waiver can be downloaded here (to to “Volunteer in Parks,” then “Work Parties,” then “Waiver and Medical Alert.) Please print out and bring to the event. We will have waivers on hand if parents/guardians want to drop off their 13-17 years olds for a few hours of donut-fueled weed wrenching.

A Unanimous YES! Join us October 22 to Celebrate!

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Please join us on Saturday October 22 from 10-11 a.m. for a celebration of our mission accomplished–the acquisition of the second half of the LBA Woods (the “Bentridge” parcel). The recent vote of the Olympia City Council to acquire this parcel of land marks a victory for the LBA Woods Park Coalition, which includes thousands of supporters who worked to protect the 150-acre woods from a housing development.

You are part of this coalition and deserve celebration if you..signed our petition, displayed a yard sign, spoke up at a city-council meeting, raised money with a yard sale, wrote letters the parks department, hosted a house party, showed up at our community meetings, liked us on Facebook, tallied bird species, inventoried trees and plants, attended meetings on the housing developments, participated in online surveys on the Parks Plan, wrote letters to the editor, got your dog to bark for parks, supported the Metropolitan Park District, wrote songs and poems about the park, posted your photos and videos of the park on social media, hugged a tree…

The campaign to Save the LBA Woods was successful because of the broad community support for our vision to create a legacy park for Olympia. Just look:

lba parcels

So…let us all gather to celebrate! We’ll be in the picnic shelter on the west end of the park (the Amhurst Rd. entrance off Morse-Merryman).

We’ll have hot drinks and light refreshments, followed by a group photo, and a guided tour of the woods.

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And…fueled by snacks and camaraderie, we will move right into a work party (11 a.m.-2 p.m.). Feel free to attend either or both the celebration and the work party. Our August work party was a blast! We’ll provide the tools, gloves, and supervision. Be sure to wear sturdy, close-toed shoes, and long pants and shirts. Rain gear is advisable! Everyone is welcome to participate! Children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult; children 14-17 working without an adult must have a signed waiver. Download the waiver here. (Go to “Volunteer in Parks/Work Parties/Waiver and Medical Alert”) Anyone over 17 waives liability upon sign in at the event.

City Council Vote This Tuesday!

 

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Join the LBA Woods Park Coalition Tuesday night (September 27) at 7 p.m. for the big vote by City Council to approve the option to purchase the 72-acre “Bentridge” parcel. If approved (and we have no doubt it will be) this acquisition means the LBA Woods will be the second largest park in Olympia!

Details of the purchase can be read here in the Staff Report.

Wear your T-shirts, bring your signs! The LBA Woods Park Coalition leadership team will be handing out Ds (see photo) for your signs and evergreen fronds to wave during the meeting. This will be our silent cheer, our visually stunning thanks from the trees, some green gratitude.

The meeting takes place at Olympia City Hall.