July 4th, Tuesday - Temecula July 4th Parade 
Old Town, Temecula 

This went on without a hitch.  We had the Earth Ball, two bicycles and one tricycle, stuffed animals, and plenty of friendly enthusiasm.  The audience was quite large and very friendly.

A great day for this year's July 4th Celebration.

Put on by Margaret Meyncke
Sierra Club / Santa Margarita Group
Outreach Chair​​


​​Aug. 12 (Sat) 8:30 AM  Palomar Mountain State Park Hike

Join me on a hike through the deeply forested trails of Palomar Mountain State Park.  I will be using several trails to form a loop. The hike will be moderately aggressive, about 8 miles long with about 1000' of gain/loss.  I will be making some changes from last year's hike to highlight different park features. We will meet at the parking lot near Doane Pond. This is where the hike will begin and finish.  Dress in layers, bring 2 liters of water, a snack or lunch, sturdy hiking shoes and don't forget the sunscreen. The park's physical address is 19952 State Park Rd. Palomar Mountain, CA 92060.  There is an $8 per vehicle day use fee. To register or for more information:  email Bob Audibert at bob.takeahike1@gmail.com or call me at (951)302-1059.  Steady rain cancels.  Santa Margarita Group


​ 1. Primal Pastures on Oct. 15, 2016

We toured Primal Pastures; Farmer John, our tour guide, detailed the objectives for the operation. The operation is a small family farm located in Murrieta, California. Their goal is to produce wholesome meat that is grown humanely, responsibly and sustainably.


                                Tour of Primal Pastures

2. Temecula Olive Oil Ranch

We had a great educational afternoon, November 6, 2016.  In addition we had good music, good food, olive oil tasting and raffle.  It was a good opportunity to meet and socialize, and listen to a talented vocalist, Kelly Wilson.
Thom Curry of Temecula Olive Oil Company was our tour guide.  We learned briefly how the ranch was created, the microclimate of the site, the type of olive trees, and the process of extracting olive oil from the fruits.  


                                  Tour of Temecula Olive Ranch

3. California Energy System in Transition, Regional Perspectives and Local Opportunities

Scott Flint was our speaker at November 10, 2016 monthly meeting. Scott is Program Manager at the California Energy Commission (CEC), in Sacramento, the primary energy policy and planning entity of the state. Its mission is to reduce energy costs and environmental impacts of energy use and ensuring a safe, resilient, and reliable supply of energy to the state.

California climate goals and how they are driving changes to the Energy System;

Environmental performance of the energy system for the last ten years;

The CEC’s multi-faceted approach to achieving climate goals (efficiency, rooftop and distributed solar, utility scale facilities, wind repowering, and transmission).

4. Meadows View: AmeriCorps

Meadow Day, October 29, 2016, was organized by Teri Biancardi.  The panel of speakers discussed alternative approaches to land management in areas at risk of desertification. These include erosion control, soil remediation and native plant regeneration strategies, which are currently being implemented in the community open space by an AmeriCorps team, who is deployed to the area for six weeks.



                From the left: Teri Biancardi, Carmen Fields,
              Zach Chastain, Anisha Borthakur, Cody Autaubo

Teri Biancardi discussed methods for erosion control, soil remediation, and native plant regeneration.

A summary of the other activities:

October 5, 2016: Thompson Middle School’s successful Eco-Fair was attended by over 500 7th grade students.  Several agencies provided interactive information. The focus was on tracking of the wildlife and the Murrieta Creek Regional Trail next to the school.

Also, Pam Nelson, Teri Biancardi and Laurie Webster, members of the Altair Team, investigated the proposed development in detail through the eyes of the city planning staff, developers and the councilmen/woman.  The development impinges on the already restricted wildlife corridors and freeway crossing.  

November 5, 2016:  Pam, Scott and Caren tabled at the annual Family Wildlife Day at the Santa Rosa Plateau.

November 21, 2016:  Twenty people participated in the fifth workshop of our Teachers’ Environmental Education program.  Topics were environmental science through lessons, field trips, community outings and field monitoring.

December 11, 2016:  Our Holiday party is at Vail Lake Resort once a “wild west” cattle range. The site has recently been opened to the public.  We’ll have a hay ride tour of the site, music and food.

January 12, 2017: The Land and People of the Santa Margarita Watershed'  6:30 pm 

Temecula Library,  30600 Pauba Rd, Temecula CA 92592

                   The speaker for our monthly meeting is

                      Dr.  Eleanora Robbins.

She is interested on assisting school children to better understand the physical and biological elements of our environment. Her presentation will include the physical make-up of our Santa Margarita river watershed, earthquake faults, and other earth-changing themes.

The geology of the Santa Margarita watershed is fascinating--and in some respects it resembles many characteristics of the East African Rift Valley.  The cities of Temecula and Murrieta lie in a tectonically active rift.  Volcanic rocks and cryptic structures show that high heat flow has been evident over eons of time.  Overprinted on the geological processes are anthropogenic behaviors that increase down dropping and flooding.  Soils of ancient villages show that Luiseno and Cahuilla people populated the Santa Margarita watershed, as do their reservation-based and urban descendants today.

Eleanora (Doc) Robbins, PhD is a bio-geologist, retired to San Diego from the Washington, DC area.  As a volunteer, she has run Science Explorers Club monthly since 2001 on Indian reservations in San Diego County.  In this program, she teaches outdoors science to 5-11 year olds.  Activities cover geology, hydrology, biology, botany, and soil science.  Her degrees are BS (1964 Ohio State Univ.), MS (1972 Univ. Arizona), and PhD (1982 Penn State Univ.).  She started her professional career in the Peace Corps as a geologist with the Geological Survey of Tanzania; on vacation, she mapped in the East African Rift Valley for Lewis Leakey.  Then she was a researcher for the US Geological Survey for 34 years, working on mineral deposits, coal, and petroleum.  In San Diego, she served as adjunct faculty for 14 years at San Diego State Univ.  Her current research on the sulfur cycle of the San Diego River is with the San Diego River Park Foundation.