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November 09, 2011

Congressman Bob Filner Tours Otay Valley Regional Park with WiLDCOAST

Preserving open space, habitat restoration, environmental education and quality outdoor recreation on the radar
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AJ Schneller, Kyle Connor, Congressman Bob Filner, and Marc Pumpkinthief at the Finney Overlook in Otay Valley Regional Park

When Congressman Bob Filner (D-CA) helped to create the Otay Valley Regional Park two decades ago the word "park" would probably not have been the first word to come to mind. As we strolled through the park the Congressman remarked at how far the park has come along. Tons of invasive plant species have been remediated to make way for lush riparian habitat. The park's former illegal dump sites have been beautified and the larger issues of rampant illegal dumping and off-road vehicle abuses has ended.

The OVRP now boasts a ranger station, 7 staging areas, and 8 miles of maintained trails for hiking, Mt. Biking, bird watching, picknicking, equestrian trails, and are ADA accessible. The historical industrial gravel pits have filled in with water from the Otay River and now provide excellent refuge for migrating birds. In these same ponds you can fish for bass and catfish if you have a license from the CA Department of Fish and Game.

Congressman Filner discussed how lucky we are in San Diego County to have so many open space preserves for quality nature-based recreational activities, locations where hands-on environmental learning can be facilitated through the schools and non-profit organizations like WiLDCOAST and the Earth Discovery Institute's Habitat Heroes Program. 

The fact remains that the OVRP is an underutilized open space gem in south San Diego Bay! As such, if you or your school or community group (etc.) would like to tour the park via foot or Mt. Bike, contact AJ Schneller at aj@wildcoast.net or 619-423-8665

On Dec. 3rd from 9 am - 1 pm we'll be coordinating an ice plant habitat restoration event in the park, where you can participate in the removal of invasive species, and planting natives. RSVP with AJ. More details here:

http://www.wildcoast.net/take-action/events/54

On behalf of WiLDCOAST, we'd like to thank Congressman Filner for his continued support for the preservation of open space in San Diego County, and taking time from his busy schedule to walk through the Otay valley Regional Park.

Ready to visit the OVRP? Directions and Hours for the park can be found here:

http://www.ovrp.org/