Category Archives: Speaker Series
East Sacramento Preservation wishes all our members and friends a Happy New Year. After more than two years working to help the neighborhood oppose McKinley Village, 2015 was a time to return to our roots. Below is a brief summary of what we’ve been up to this year and some plans for next year.
Our popular Speaker Series hosted three outstanding presenters with unique talents and deep historical understanding of Sacramento.
Paula Peper–Historian and author of several books about our beautiful park neighborhoods and trees
Bill Burg–State Historian, author and Sacramento trolley history expert
Wes Green–design genius and owner of Twigs Floral Design
When ESP’s Judy McClaver started to volunteer at McKinley Pond three years ago she never imagined that she would become an award winning neighborhood icon. Her efforts have forced the city to address the issues at the pond. ESP supports her and the cadre of pond volunteers’ incredible dedication and hard work. She serves on the city pond committee and worked daily to clean and preserve the pond. (City Parks denied her use of the boat, so her garbage patrol and island work are curtailed.) However, park maintenance has stepped up and is now keeping trash cans empty on regular basis and the City reportedly has hired a pond maintenance company starting Jan 2016. We’ve set aside a portion of funds to donate to the rehab effort, once the city is able to create a workable plan. (At the end of this article is Judy’s “pondlife” list. Amazing what we have in the city!)
This year’s National Night Out was a packed bonanza. SWAT, canine, car patrol, bike patrol, fire, politicals—they all came, as did the neighborhood. It was a party.
Essays, provocative and informative, tackled East Sac issues with humor and insight. Our most popular essays were Airbnb, Pond Update, Exact Spot, Insist on Trees, No Permit, Illegal Building Draws East Sac Neighbors’ Ire.
ESP has joined multiple neighborhood associations in the effort to preserve Sacramento’s tree canopy. We are cosigners on numerous comments and letters to the city and support the healthy preservation of our canopy. We also promoted the retention of snag habitats, whenever it is safe to do so.
When the city sends us information, we share it. From parking, palm pruning, to events and meetings, we send it your way. When neighbors ask for help with city issues, we step up.
ESP supported the Ethics and Transparency movement led by the League of Women Voters and Eye on Sacramento. We stand firm with Eye on Sacramento and know there is much more to be done. However, we offer kudos to both groups for their work.
ESP featured Nextdoor in an article on the web site. The fun of this was that we drove to San Francisco and visited the start up. What a great group of innovators.
For more than seven years East Sacramento Preservation has been the pour and clean up team at Pops in the Park at East Portal. In 2016 we’re helping out at East Portal and Bertha Henschel Parks. If you’d like to pour with the team, send us an email!
Supporting SCUSD and school events is a pleasure. We post and spread the word about fundraisers, events and surveys.
Locals send us information about community events, farmers’ market, volunteer days, health and safety, river danger issues and individual efforts. We post all that come our way.
Traffic is an on-going concern in East Sacramento and our flag program on 33th and H is in its third year. Although flag theft makes the effort a little tricky, we know this is a great safety benefit to the community. ESP also distributes the Drive Like Your Kids Live Here Signs.
East Sacramento Preservation, Inc. is proud to support the designation of the Maple Avenue/38th Street Historical District that has been presented to the City of Sacramento’s Preservation Director. We should hear soon how the city will act on the application. These two blocks of 38th Street between J Street and Folsom Boulevard are a showcase of early 20th Century residential structures and the history of their occupants is long and important to the development of Sacramento. Many of the original occupants were captains of industry that have left a legacy of contributions to the city.
We are hopeful that this first historical district in East Sacramento will lead to other deserving portions and individual structures in the neighborhood being similarly designated. This is essential so that these resources are not lost to the speculative fever that is currently resulting in the wanton destruction of the residential fabric and character that helps make this community special.
News for 2016
An ESP High School Scholarship is under discussion. Our student board member, Emiliano Gómez, will be leading the study.
In the coming year we will work to improve the web site set up and delivery system. We love all feedback, positive and negative, and have read all your comments.
Our popular speaker series will continue with new and exciting speakers.
Please consider year-end donations to ESP. We’re an East Sacramento charity that works in your neighborhood. We spend money in no other place. All donations or membership will go to our established programs and is 100% tax deductible. All ESP community workers, writers, project organizers, forum and speaker series participants are non-paid volunteers.
Judy’s Pondlife List
Black-crowned night herons
Greater White fronted geese
Robins and other common Sacramento birds
Miscellaneous migrating birds
All the domestic ducks and geese were relocated by Judy to help preserve the pond and protect wildlife’s health.
Turtles—99% are red-eared sliders
And, of course, the ubiquitous, squirrel (most are Fox Squirrels with a few Grays)
Cavity-nesting birds in East Portal Park
The drought has killed several trees in East Portal Park and I now see that many of them have been marked with an orange ring, presumably so that they can be taken down. While I recognize the need to remove any which pose a safety risk, it is also important for the city to consider the wildlife value of these very trees.
Our city is home to a wide variety of bird species, many of which breed right in town. Among those birds, some nest only in cavities in trees. For the most part the trees, which provide the best cavities for these birds, are ones which are dead or dying. I walk East Portal Park nearly every morning and have noted that at least three bird species have nested each year in cavities in trees in this park: Nuttall’s Woodpecker (a woodpecker found only along the west coast in California and Oregon), Western Bluebird, and Oak Titmouse. In particular, all three species are using cavities in some of the marked trees. (Zelkova species, I believe.) I am hopeful that the city will consider saving at least one or two of these trees.
I also understand that, besides safety issues, there is an aesthetic reason for taking down dead or dying trees. Few people actually understand that, from a wildlife perspective, these are often the most valuable trees in a forests (urban OR native forests). Many other communities have recognized this and have implemented programs to try to save some of these trees, marking them with “Wildlife Tree” signage so that the public understands why they have been saved. One example is a program in place in Orange County (http://cavityconservation.com/). An example of the type of signage used is shown below.
I have included a few photos showing cavities which have been used by nesting birds in recent years in East Portal Park. One tree in particular has been very productive and I am hopeful that this tree, at least, can be retained. It is along M Street, just where 51st intersects.