Filming “Old Survivor”: Day 6

Emily Burns is not only the lead scientist at Save the Redwoods League. She is one of only a handful of leading experts studying to understand the wonders of the redwood forests. Participating in her interview today – inside Joaquin Miller Park’s redwood grove – was educational and inspiring (to say the least).

Filming “Old Survivor”: Day 5

Part 1

We started the day by having an in-depth discussion with Robert Doyle, General Manager of the East Bay Regional Park District. Mr. Doyle, who started working at for the park district 40 years ago as a ranger, talked us through the district’s storied history, modern day successes, and future goals.

Part 2

In the afternoon, we met up with a group of young ladies from First Place for Youth, an organization that offers critical support to foster youth between the ages of 18 and 24. There’s no volunteer activity I love more than leading Oakland youth and youth group leaders on a hiking tour in Oakland’s redwoods. Starting in Joaquin Miller Park, we made our way up to Redwood Peak before heading back down the hill.

Filming “Old Survivor”: Day 4

Today we interviewed an old friend, Nicholas Williams, Director of Oakland Parks, Recreation, and Youth Development.

An Oakland native who left for college, then ran recreation programs in Atlanta and Minneapolis before coming back to Oakland in 2016 to lead our parks department, Nicholas gave a touching tribute to his dad, who he connected with as a child in Oakland parks. He also gave a detailed description of the rebranding of his department from OPR to OPRYD, and his commitment to connecting kids to nature.

Filming “Old Survivor”: Day 2

On a rainy Thursday morning, we met up with Oakland youth from Skyline High School. They were on a science field trip in Redwood Park led by Save the Redwoods League and East Bay Regional Park District staff.

Despite the cold, wet weather, everyone was in great spirits to learn some science. The 9th grade biology students conducted the same experiments that professional scientists perform to measure the biomass of individual redwood trees, and log in measurements of ferns.

We also found some interesting critters on an exploratory hike through the area.

We finished the day by interviewing a few of the students, and Deborah Zierten, Education & Interpretation Manager for Save the Redwoods League.