GGNRA Big Year Closes January 10 with Celebration at Crissy Field Center

 In Conservation, Environment
Western snowy plover

Western snowy plover

Almost one year ago, the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) launched a competition to save endangered species in San Francisco, the Peninsula and Marin. On Saturday, January 10, the year-long event called the “2008 GGNRA Endangered Species Big Year” will come to a close with an announcement of the grand prize award winner and free food and other gifts for wildlife enthusiasts at the Crissy Field Center.

The closing ceremony will feature give aways from Arizmendi Bakery, free 2009 nature almanacs from WildNature and free subscriptions to Bay Nature Magazine for 50 visitors. After the ceremony, bird experts will lead a short hike to search for the Western snowy plover, an endangered San Francisco shorebird.

GGNRA, a unit of the national park system, includes the world-renowned destinations of Alcatraz Island and Muir Woods and is the world’s largest urban national park with over 75,000 acres in San Francisco, Marin, and San Mateo counties. GGNRA has a unique geographical position covering a broad range of habitats for plants and wildlife including marine habitats, salt marshes, redwood forests, chaparral and coastal scrub habitats, and grasslands, just to name a few.

According to the National Park Service, the GGNRA contains more endangered species than any other National Park in continental North America: more than Yellowstone, Yosemite, Kings Canyon, and Sequoia National Parks combined.

The 2008 GGNRA Endangered Species Big Year was a race against time to see and save each of the park’s 33 endangered species. During 2008, over 250 Endangered Species Big Year competitors raced to see each of the 33 endangered species found in the GGNRA, and then take 33 actions that help these species recover during the calendar year in 2008.

According to GGNRA, three competitors are vying for the grand prize: Liam O’Brien, former Broadway actor; Steve Price, branding expert who named products such as Blackberry, Pentium and Apple PowerBook; and David Seaborg, son of the Berkeley physicist for whom the element Seaborgium is named.

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