Calling in the Marines

Once again, San Francisco amazed visitors from around the country and the world this past weekend with a plethora of activities going on throughout the city. Fleet Week, America’s Cup races and Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival were just a few of the events that were on offer.

With so many activities for visitors

With the city for a backdrop, it was a beautiful day to work in the gardens. Photo by Shelagh Fritz

to choose from, it was a special opportunity to have the United States Marine Corps and Navy personnel volunteer throughout the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.  Many of the personnel were on ships coming from Los Angeles, and for many, this was a first time visit to San Francisco.

A group of Marines joined the garden volunteers to clear overgrowth from a series of terraces. We had been saving this ‘once a year’ project for a tough volunteer group and who could work harder than the Marines? After a quick lesson on how to work safely on the historic terraces built by inmates in the 1940s, and shown the difference in the types of plants that we were cutting back, the Marines set to work.

Clearing out the vegetation on the historic terraces. Photo by Shelagh Fritz

In no time at all, the terraces were cleared and we made several trips to our compost pile, which is now a compost mountain.

The volunteer coordinators from the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy were instrumental in organizing the activities. For the second year in a row, Marines and Navy have volunteered throughout the park. This year, there were 154 personnel volunteering at 5 park sites. Together, they contributed 462 hours, or the equivalent of 3 months of work for one full time staff!

Everyone pitched right in to help. Photo by Shelagh Fritz

Thank you to all of the volunteers who helped in the gardens, we hope to see you back next year!

Fast progress was made in clearing the terraces. Photo by Shelagh Fritz

 

 

It’s not every day you get to work alongside the Marines! Photo by Shelagh Fritz

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