As of Tuesday, March 24, all Sonoma County parks are closed by order of public health officials. That means the parks we maintain—Sugarloaf Ridge State Park, Sonoma Garden Park, Montini Open Space Preserve and Sonoma Overlook Trail—are off limits for the time being. The order includes all beaches and parks large and small, even local fields and play-structures.
Given the severity of the COVID-19 crisis and threats to our health care system and community, we understand and urge support for our officials as they work so hard through this crisis to protect lives.
Residents are still allowed to go outside, and paved paths such as Sonoma Bike Path and Sonoma City Trail remain open at this time for pedestrian use only (no bicycles).
We know this is a sad outcome for many locals who had been enjoying our parks and open spaces safely, practicing social distancing and otherwise following the health protocols put in place for everyone’s protection. These protocols are still in place and include:
- Maintain a distance of six feet or more at all times
- Don’t touch common surfaces such as doorknobs
- Carry and use your own hand sanitizer or soap
- Bring your own water; avoid public fountains
- Stay home if you’re sick
We still encourage people to go outside regularly for fresh air and exercise while always following the above guidelines.
For those of you needing a nature fix, we’re here to help! Sonoma Valley’s diverse plants and animals are still here and still thriving—and with the help of modern technology, such as our wildlife cameras, we will continue to bring their images to you. Please follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest inspiration from Sonoma Valley’s great outdoors.
We also have tips for gardeners! Now is the time for weeding, mowing, trimming and planting—but please leave piles of brush where they are until September, as native birds are nesting in them. Plant pollinator-friendly natives such as hummingbird sage, California fuchsia, sticky monkeyflower, deer grass and milkweed. And check out our in-house brochure offering more tips on fire-smart, water-wise and wildlife-friendly landscaping.
Finally, go to www.sonomavalleyvolunteers.org to learn how you can help others as a volunteer in the community during this crisis.
By working together, Sonoma Valley residents will once again come away stronger, smarter and more resilient. And we’ll be right there with you every step of the way.