Whether you are a nature expert or a fauna novice, the Wildlife Festival at Alum Rock Park in San Jose, California has got something for you. Held on Sunday, Oct. 3 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., the event is hosted by the Youth Science Institute (YSI). The festival invites the community to come enjoy the natural beauty of the park and learn about the many animals and reptiles at YSI’s Alum Rock Science and Nature Center.
Start the afternoon off right with a nature walk at 11:15 a.m. that will be led by one of YSI’s trained experts. It will explore some of the great sights at Alum Rock Park and help get you acquainted with the terrain. When you come back from the energizing walk, you can check some of the presentations the YSI has planned throughout the day.
At 12:30 p.m., YSI will present “Falconry Through the Ages,” where the audience can learn all about raptors and watch them take flight. For smaller children, there will be nature-themed crafts and the Smokey Bear Story Time at noon. There will also be entertainment, like the Hawaiian tunes played by Nakolohe Kane at 11 a.m. and by Ukulele Jams at 2 p.m.
YSI is “a nonprofit organization that partners with nature to teach science to 30,000 preschool through eighth-grade students annually,” said YSI executive director Susanne Mulcahy. They offer many programs throughout the year for both students and adults, including summer science camps, after school programs and family events.
This is the 25th year that YSI has hosted the Wildlife Festival. Last year, the festival drew in a crowd of around 1,200 people and Mulcahy expects the same this year. Not even rain will stop the festivities, as YSI promises the show will go on-rain or shine.
The Alum Rock Park YSI center is located at 16260 Penitencia Creek Road in San Jose, California. The Wildlife Festival does not have an admission fee, but there is a suggested donation of $5 a family that will go to YSI Alum Rock schools programs and their Animal Ambassadors.
There is also $6 per vehicle parking fee. Parking fills up fast, so you might have to make a bit of a trek up to the festival. “From the main entrance to the park, it’s a wonderful bike ride or walk 2 miles up the path along Penitencia Creek-we strongly urge folks to bike or walk,” suggested Mulcahy. “We recommend that people come early for best parking. And of course, to get the most out of the Festival.”
“Birds of Prey,” Wikipedia.com