Service was a big part of Martin Luther King’s message, which is why many celebrate his legacy by volunteering on MLK Day. Last Jan. 16 was no exception, as Sonoma Ecology Center’s Restoration crew organized a large group of volunteers at Nathanson Creek Preserve, there to help in the ongoing work of restoring this lovely creekside park.

An estimated 50 volunteers turned out, representing the Boys & Girls Club, a leadership group from Altimira Middle School’s Boys & Girls Club, the Ecology Club from Adele Harrison Middle School, some Earth Club members from Sonoma Valley High School, plus a few other unaffiliated community members and as always, our own EnviroLeaders. With all their help, we are able to get 200 native plants into the ground while removing “a ton” of invasive weeds.

Aside from the participating schools, two local businesses made the day even more special. Whole Foods donated sandwiches, drinks, chips, fruit and snacks, and Starbucks donated coffee (thank you!). The Department of Water Resources and the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District deserve special thanks for funding our Nathanson Creek Preserve project, as does the City of Sonoma for its reliable support.