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What's this all about?
Where are these work parties?
Seahurst Park Event schedule
Shorewood Park Event schedule
Eagle Landing Park Event schedule
Schedule for occasional Events
Past Events

Adopt-A-Park work parties are supported by the Burien Parks Department and the Environmental Science Center.
What's this all about?

Burien's Parks and Recreation Department program sponsors volunteer events to help maintain and improve local parks. One of the biggest problems facing parks all over the northwest [and probably the world] is invasive plant species. The worst and most obvious offenders locally are Himalayan Blackberries, English Ivy, English Holly, Old Man's Beard [Clematis] and English Laurel. All of them spread rapidly and overwhelm native species.

One of the most critical things to do is to keep them from spreading, especially preventing them from going to seed. See the Invasive plants section on our wildlife page for more information about some of these plants. Shorewood On The Sound also has an excellent page with information about ivy, why it's a problem, and what you can do in your own yard to help. Unfortunately it's about more than just ivy, there are a number of invasive plants that are beginning to cause huge problems. This Seattle PI article shows how big a problem holly and ivy are, and how much effort is going into controlling them.

Where are these work parties?

Volunteers are needed in several different parks, a Google Map showing the location of the work parties is next to each date once the location has been determined. There are work parties in Shorewood Park on the second Saturday of most months. The Shorewood work parties are now alternating between Shorewood Park and the Salmon Creek Ravine. In Eagle Landing Park work parties are on the second Sunday of every month, from 10 to 1. Please check Jim's website for dates and details. Since I'm moving away, Work Parties in Seahurst Park will be intermittent, please watch the Parks Department NewsLetter and/or this site for notices.

Tools and gloves will be available for volunteers to use. We have pruners, pruning saws, and hand mattocks as well as rubber palmed work gloves. Most times we'll have a weed wrench or two. Feel free to bring any similar tools of your own if you'd like. If you prefer to use your own gloves, heavy leather gloves are best if you have them.

You can just show up, but if you're bringing a group please try to let us know so that we can be sure to have enough tools. You can contact Lisa at the Parks Department at (206) 988-3700, or <email me> and I'll pass it along.

Seahurst Park Events:
Until a new steward is found for Seahurst Park Work Parties will be intermittent. Please watch the City of Burien Parks Department NewsLetter and/or this site for notices of planned events.

Shorewood Park and Salmon Creek Ravine Events:
Unless otherwise noted all events are 10AM to Noon on the second Saturday of the month. The group alternates between Shorewood Park on even numbered months and the Salmon Creek Ravine on odd numbered months. Exceptions are January (4th Saturday) and April (1st Saturday)
  • Saturday January 22, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Salmon Creek Ravine. Google Map for Salmon Creek Ravine location>
    Several groups have put in a lot of hours clearing blackberries and ivy from sections of the Ravine, especially along the trail at the entrance by the Sewer Treatment Plant. SW Suburban Sewer District has been very helpful with this project: opening the gates on a couple of Saturdays to allow easy access, hauling away debris, and even having their employees clear a large section of ivy on the fence. Now it's time to plant. Join us on the 22nd while we put new native plants in to restore the areas that have been cleared of invasives.
  • Saturday February 12, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Shorewood Park. Google Map for Shorewood Park
    Come help clean up Shorewood Park. While it's in better shape than many forested parks (thanks to the dedicated work of a lot of volunteers) there are still plenty of invasives to remove. We also hope to be planting more native plants.
  • Saturday March 12, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Salmon Creek Ravine. Google Map for Salmon Creek Ravine location>
    We'll meet by the Sewer Plant gate for this project.
  • Saturday April 2, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Shorewood Park. Google Map for Shorewood Park
  • This is not the normal Saturday for this work party.
  • Saturday May 14, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Salmon Creek Ravine. Google Map for Salmon Creek Ravine location
    We'll meet by the Sewer Plant gate for this project.
  • Saturday June 11, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Shorewood Park. Google Map for Shorewood Park

  • Saturday July 9, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Salmon Creek Ravine.
    Please check back for the work party location.
  • Saturday August 13, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Shorewood Park. Google Map for Shorewood Park

  • Saturday September 10, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Salmon Creek Ravine.
    Please check back for the work party location.
  • Saturday October 8, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Shorewood Park. Google Map for Shorewood Park

  • Saturday November 12, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Salmon Creek Ravine.
    Please check back for the work party location.
  • Saturday December 10, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out in Shorewood Park. Google Map for Shorewood Park

Eagle Landing Park Events:
Events are usually 10AM to 1PM on the 2nd Sunday of the month. See the Eagle Landing Park website for details about times, what to bring and where to go.
Google Map for Eagle Landing Park

Other occasional Events:
  • Saturday March 19, 2011: Ivy [and more] Out at Arbor Lake. Google Map for Arbor Lake location
    This event is scheduled at Arbor Lake Park from 9am to 11am. Previous workparties (including some independent ones by a neighborhood group) have removed most of the invasives at the south end and most of the west side of the lake. We will continue to clear mostly invasive Himalayan Blackberry along the northwest edge of the lake. Please just show up if you're interested, tools will be provided. The park is located at South 124th ST and 4th AVE S., 98168. No Restroom Facilities.

Past Events:
  • Saturday March 7, 2009: Washington Native Plant Society sponsored Nature walk through the north end of Seahurst Park.
    Leader: Jim Branson
    We joined Jim for an exploration of the park, where trillium (Trillium ovatum) was just starting to come up and skunk cabbage (Lysichiton americanum) was in full bloom. The nature trail loops from the beach into the upland forest and past wetlands and streams. We had a chance to identify lots of native and invasive plants. There are quite a few Pacific Yew trees in the park including one that is estimated to be about 400 years old. Another appears to be about 150 years old and has a large scar where it was probably scraped while it was still small when the area was logged in the late 1800s.
  • February through May 2009: Ivy [and more] Out in Seahurst Park, North Maintenance Road Google Map
    Early in the year the City of Burien had hired goats to come in and clean up a section along the road that was covered in blackberries and ivy. The goats did a great job, but there needed to be some more cleanup done afterwards. Among other things garbage [mostly bottles and cans] that had been covered for years was exposed when they ate the brush. So we picked up a lot of that, cut down a bunch of holly and English Laurel [goats don't like either of them] grubbed out some blackberry roots, cut back some stems that were too big for the goats, girdled the ivy that went up trees too far for the goats to reach, and generally opened up the area. We also knocked down some nearby patches of ivy, laurel and holly, plus we were able to get a couple of infestations of Old Man's Beard [Clematis]. There's more to do in the area, including some stinky bob, blackberries, ivy patches and more, but nothing that can't wait for a while, so it's off to the beach.
  • June through November, 2009: Seahurst Park, near the South Shelter. Google Map
    As part of the south beach restoration native plant beds were put in along the shore near the south shelter. After a couple of years there were a lot of volunteer alders coming up that would shade out the plants we want. Other invasives including blackberries, Morning Glory, Japanese Knotweed and more were also starting to move in. There were some alders planted there that we wanted to leave, but the volunteers and invasives needed to removed. Many of the natives are doing great, including large patches of coastal strawberries. During the summer sessions volunteers cleaned up most of area from the bridge to the end of the planting beds. In October we were helped by about 15 volunteers from a Cub Scout Troop and a Boy Scout Troop. In November we finished removing a large patch of Scotchbroom growing on the beach just north of the new restrooms.
  • January through November, 2010: Seahurst Park.

    We spent the first couple of months working around the upper end and across the road from the upper parking lot. If you look to the right from the stop sign you'll see lots of dead ivy in the trees over there. A couple of trees had already been pulled down by ivy which can add thousands of pounds plus wind load to a tree.

    We also spent several months killing ivy further up the road into the park. We started near the last house on the left as you come down the hill and worked down to about the area of the gate. This area had been worked several years earlier, but the ivy comes back. We again killed the ivy that had gone up trees since only vertical ivy goes to seed. We also worked a little on the north side of the road. A couple of us went down the hill and worked along the stream at a couple of events, killing vertical ivy and even removing some entire small patches that were just getting started on the other side of the creek.

    We spent the last 3 months of 2009 working at the upper entrance to the park, cleaning up the area that the goats had worked on a couple of years before. The big problem in this area is blackberries, and we hacked down a LOT of them, plus managed to grub out quite a few root wads. It was a pleasant surprise to see how many native plants are still surviving beneath the blackberries if they haven't gotten too overwhelming. If we can control the blackberries, the natives will eventually crowd them out.

    It's critical to pay attention to areas that have already been restored. It takes a lot less time to keep them clean than it would to clean them up again.

For a number of years groups have been sponsoring Moonlight Beach Walks in Seahurst Park. The events continue to grow in popularity, with as many as 60 or more people showing up in all sorts of weather. This is a unique opportunity to see the beach and the things that live on it. At low tide during the day many plants and animals disappear to protect themselves from the light and predators. But at night they remain more visible. All you need is a flashlight and warm clothing. The Beach Naturalists will help you find and identify things. And provide information about Beach Etiquette so that we can protect the life on the beach. Thanks to The Environmental Science Center, People for Puget Sound, the City of Burien and the Seattle Aquarium for helping to sponsor this event.See the Environmental Science Center's website for more information.
Seahurst Park Celebrated National Coastal Clean-up Day Saturday, September 20, 2008
This event was sponsored by the City of Burien, REI, the Environmental Science Center and Volunteers for Outdoor Washington.

The event was a great success with over 50 people showing up to pitch in.

The group pulled ivy off of the old caretaker's house and a couple of nearby trees, removed several large holly trees, including one that was going to seed, and cleared blackberries and other invasives from two areas near the North Shelter. In one area ferns were planted to replace them. There's a photo album in our Photo Gallery.

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Content updated February 20, 2011
Minor update March 26, 2009