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Press Release: Sylvia McLaughlin to be Honored at Berkeley Meadow East Shore Dedication

From Isa Polt-Jones
Friday April 08, 2011 - 04:39:00 PM

The East Bay Regional Park District, in cooperation with California State Parks, will host an Earth Day dedication of the Berkeley Meadow at Eastshore State Park on Saturday, April 16 at 11:30 am. Sylvia McLaughlin, one of the leading community supporters of the park and meadow, will be the guest of honor. East Bay Regional Park District Board Member Whitney Dotson will emcee the event and elected officials including Senator Loni Hancock, Assemblymember Nancy Skinner, and Mayor Tom Bates are scheduled to speak. Following the dedication, staff will lead an interpretive walk in the meadow. 

The dedication celebrates the East Bay Regional Park District┬╣s third and final phase of the Berkeley Meadow Restoration Project. The 72-acre meadow, a former landfill site, was restored in three phases over five years at a cost of $6,000,000. The finished meadow has seasonal wetlands, coastal prairie and coastal scrub areas, creating a diverse and thriving habitat for plants and animals in an urban area. Walking paths and interpretive signs welcome the public. 

At their April 5 meeting, the East Bay Regional Park District board of directors unanimously agreed to honor Sylvia McLaughlin and the late Dwight Steele at the dedication. Leading community supporters and advocates of creating a shoreline park, both were instrumental in preserving and restoring the East Bay shoreline and creating a long-standing supportive citizens movement including the founding of Citizens for East Shore Parks (CESP). CESP has played an important role in the 30-year effort to create Eastshore State Park. At 94, Sylvia McLaughlin remains a passionate member of the CESP Board of Directors. CESP co-founder, Dwight Steele, regrettably passed away in 2003. 

The East Bay Regional Park District manages Eastshore for the State, and owns the property with California State Parks. Funding for the Berkeley Meadow Project was provided by the California Coastal Conservancy, the East Bay Regional Park District, California State Parks, City of Berkeley, Bailey Estates LLC, Cherokee- Simeon Joint Venture, and Knapp Excavators. 

This dedication is part of the Berkeley Bay Festival, an environmental education event planned at the Berkeley waterfront that includes a volunteer shoreline cleanup and an open house of the new Shorebird Nature Center. 

The dedication will take place at the Berkeley Meadow southwest entrance, along Marina Boulevard. 

Directions 

From I-80 westbound: Take University Avenue (Exit 11), go left at University Avenue toward Berkeley Marina, make a slight right onto Marina Blvd. The dedication will be on the right at the Marina Blvd. entrance to the meadow, directly across from the marina. 

From I-80 eastbound: Take Powell Street (Exit 9) toward Emeryville, turn left at Powell. Drive under the freeway and turn right at Frontage Road and follow it for two miles to University Avenue. Turn left on University Avenue toward Berkeley Marina, make a slight right onto Marina Blvd. The dedication will be on the right at the Marina Blvd. entrance to the meadow, directly across from the marina. 

Public information: www.ebparks.org (http://www.ebparks.org) or 1 888 EBPARKS 

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