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Green Friday

On the day after Thanksgiving, County Parks encourages San Diegans to swap shopping plans for outdoor experiences. We celebrate the 'upside of outside' with family-friendly activities in parks and preserves across the region, on a holiday we’ve coined Green Friday!


Green Friday promotes fitness and fun in County parks. Events are both active and educational – aligning with County Parks’ mission to balance recreation opportunity with efforts to protect and preserve land and local wildlife.  

Activities are open to the public and there is no cost to attend. In fact, even the day-use fees (at parks where they are collected) are waived!  

Click here to view a printable, detailed schedule of events.

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Here’s the 2021 Event Schedule:

9 a.m. – 12 p.m., Canyon and Grove Nature Hike

Sycamore Canyon/Goodan Ranch County Preserve, 16281 Sycamore Canyon Road, Poway

Embark with a ranger on a moderate 3.5 mile loop on the Martha’s Grove Trail. Learn about the native plants and wildlife of this 2,272-acre preserve while experiencing a variety of vegetation habitats, historic oak groves and the remnants of an old ranch. Pause in the nature center to meet live critters!

9 a.m. – 12 p.m., Community Habitat Restoration Event

San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve, 2710 Manchester Ave., Cardiff-by-the-Sea | REGISTER

Join us on our quest to restore 38 acres of coastal sage scrub habitat – home to the federally endangered California Gnatcatcher! Volunteers should wear comfortable clothes, shoes, sun protection and a willingness to get dirty removing invasive species and planting new native plants. 

9:30 – 10:30 a.m., Morning Hike with Park Staff

Otay Lakes County Park, 2270 Wueste Road, Chula Vista

We’re touring picture-perfect Otay Lakes County Park via a quick, 1-hour moderate hike that starts at the ranger station and ventures to incredible views of the reservoir. Extend your with trip down the storybook trail, play on the playground, picnic on the lawn while meeting rangers and making friends!   

12 – 1 p.m., Fun Fit Class: Relay Races!

Pioneer Park, 1521 Washington Place, San Diego | REGISTER
Work it out with a group fitness class, designed to improve strength, mobility and confidence in a fun atmosphere where exercise is presented in the form of relay races! Come solo or with your crew and let Mission: FIT trainers get you to the finish line!  

1 – 3 p.m., 2 Miles Around Morrison Pond

Morrison Pond, 5102 Sweetwater Road, Bonita

Take a casual stroll around Morrison Pond while learning the unique history of this body of water, and while picking up information on the trees, plants and animals that thrive on site. The trail portrays a surprising oasis in an otherwise urban area, with ample shade and great birdwatching opportunities.    

4 – 5 p.m., Fun Fit Class: Game Day!

Heritage County Park, 2454 Heritage Park Row, San Diego | REGISTER

Put that athleticism and/or competitive nature to work in this sports-themed group fitness class event! Coaches will place participants in teams and run games that are sure to provide entertainment while also helping you to burn off those Thanksgiving calories. Have fun getting fit with Mission: FIT!

5 – 7 p.m., SD Nights Virtual Meetup: Playlist BINGO

Zoom link provided with registration: Carl.McCullough@sdcounty.ca.gov

Calling all teenagers… Listen to songs and figure out who sang them, because your virtual BINGO card features artists in lieu of letters and numbers. Every genre is included: Pop, Hip Hop, Rock, Modern, Classics, Slow Jams, Boy Bands, Divas, and more… Sing along and see how your musical knowledge stacks up against other players.

 

There are other ways to turn your Friday green via outdoor experiences. Here are some do-it-yourself opportunities to fill your day!

STORY TRAILS

We’ve partnered with San Diego County Library to place book pages on signs along popular trails, so you can walk, talk and read your way through our parks. Books vary by location and will be presented in English and Spanish. Signs will be up during parks’ open hours through the holiday weekend.

Eight great locations:


CITY TRAILS AT YOUR CONVENIENCE

Our friends at San Diego Parks Foundation who support the City of San Diego’s Parks and Recreation Department invite you to visit three centrally located and picturesque public spaces. Get maps and info on their website: https://sandiegoparksfoundation.org.

Rose Canyon Open Space Trail – 3.5 miles, easy terrain

Previously inhabited as a seasonal village of the Kumeyaay People due to its water holes, streams, abundant coastal live oaks and arroyo willow trees, this trail system contains rare riparian habitat and a watershed that wanders all the way to Mission Bay. Park at Genesee and Decoro Street.   

Juniper Canyon – ½-mile loop with connection options, easy but somewhat rocky terrain

Take a quick tour of this urban canyon that is a favorite for locals and dog-walkers, alike. With less than a mile to tour you can venture onto other paths that link to properties near the starting point: Cedar Ridge Park.

Chollas Parkway – 1.75 miles out and back, easy terrain

Did you know, Chollas Creek is part of the Pueblo Watershed – running 32 miles from its headwaters in La Mesa and Lemon Grove? It drains into the bay and Barrio Logan with branches into other neighborhoods – bringing H2O to trees, brush and wildlife and shade and serenity to urban hikers!

Click here to view a printable, detailed schedule of events.

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