Saturday, July 13, 2013

Plan to foster community involvement in the Mt Baker Park Natural Area

Our plan is to actively recruit community participation in organized work parties, keep the project visible and well documented for public review, promote educational and informational activities to increase neighborhood involvement and make the site a cultural resource for long term management.

We recognize that the restoration work necessary is more than we as four volunteers can accomplish in one year, to that end we hope to partner with Earth Corps, GSP and Seattle Parks and Recreation to coordinate volunteer work parties that are available. Making regularly scheduled activities well publicised on the GSP events calendar and being responsive to requests for information from these groups will be a team task that will be made a priority, with a lead volunteer coordinator identified for each activity.

In addition a community outreach leader will be selected from the team to initiate contact with the Mt. Baker community council, the surrounding block watch communities, the Night Out neighborhood gatherings, the P-Patch community gardens, and the neighboring forest restoration groups of Coleman and Frink Park.  We would hope to partner with the buffer communities group formed by WNPS to find ways of approaching the home owners directly bordering the restoration site and open direct lines of communication with them.

In order to foster community involvement, we hope to make informative signage that updates the public on our progress and provides information on the plants and ecosystem that the park contains. From tags that identify plant names to locating a Kiosk in the Mt Baker Park public areas to provide information, we hope to make our work visible, accountable and valued by the public that uses the park.

A”friends of Mt. Baker park” community does not yet exist, but we hope to change that and make the efforts of current forest stewards and park staff a community activity.  There are many public stakeholders that enjoy the lake and its recreational activities; the public using the swimming area, the bicycle sunday events, Seafair public activities, and the many users of the recreational trails along lake washington.  We hope to engage these people in the appreciation and continued stewardship of Mt. Baker Park natural areas.