Berkeley parks

Apply soon to become an East Bay District Lifeguard

Want a good summer job? The East Bay Regional Park District is looking to hire 50 new lifeguards for the 2022 swim season.

The district operates 10 bathing areas including lakes, lagoons and pools. The lifeguard position is full-time seasonal from May to September. Anyone aged 16 or over before April 23 can apply. Starting pay is $20.17 per hour and the app includes a swim test. The remaining test dates are March 19 and 20 at Mills College in Oakland and March 26 and 27 at Granada High School in Livermore.

Candidates will be asked to swim 550 meters in less than 10 minutes, carry a rescue board 50 feet, retrieve three dive rings in four to seven feet of water, walk on water for two minutes using only their legs and retrieve a 10-pound submarine brick. There is also a short informal interview.

Participants who pass the tests will be invited to the park district lifeguard academy beginning April 23, where they will receive paid training. The academy operates for five consecutive weekends in April and May. For more information and application information, go to

Alameda: Although it is early, spring has arrived at the Crab Cove Visitor Center in Alameda. The center is hosting spring-themed Family Nature Fun from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on March 19 and 20.

This is a free, walk-in program; no registration is required. This is an opportunity for all ages to discover what’s new at Crown Beach and enjoy nature-themed activities. Then at 3 p.m. on both days, watch the staff feed the fish at the center aquarium. The Visitor Center is at the end of McKay Avenue, near Central Avenue. For information, call 510-544-3187.

Antioch: Elsewhere in the regional parks, there might still be time to sign up for the Gold Rush Adventure at Black Diamond Mines Regional Reserve in Antioch, hosted by naturalist Ashley Adams. The backstory is that a bandit from the Wild West has hidden “gold” all over the park. Ashley will provide clues to the scene.

Show up for the rush with your team anytime between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on March 19. You will uncover hidden stories about Black Diamond’s past while searching and also win prizes. Black Diamond Mines is at the end of Somersville Road, 3½ miles south of Highway 4. There is a parking fee of $5 per vehicle. The program is free, but registration is required. To register and inquire, call 888-327-2757, option 2.

Fremont: At Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont, the sheep must undergo their annual shearing. You can watch the process, then try wool carding and watch the spinning wheel in action anytime between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. on March 19. You can also make your own woolly lamb to take home.

There are also many other activities in Ardenwood. The park is a restoration of a 19th century estate that was once home to the Patterson family. Early risers can enjoy a birding walk in Ardenwood with naturalist Christina Garcia, scheduled from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. on March 20.

Ardenwood is at 34600 Ardenwood Blvd. in Fremont, just north of Highway 84. For more information on programs and admission fees, call 510-544-2797. There is no admission fee for the bird walk.

Berkeley: An ascent of Wildcat Peak is on the schedule from 9-11 a.m. on March 20 at Tilden Nature Area near Berkeley, led by naturalist “Trail Gail” Broesder. The group will observe wildlife and experience panoramic views of the bay and San Francisco from the top. Wear hiking shoes; bring water and snacks.

This is a free program and no registration is required. Meet Gail at the Tilden Environmental Education Center, which is at the north end of Central Park Drive. For information, call 510-544-2233.

Also in Fremont: Bees and other pollinators are the focus of a short walk for ages 5 and up from 10-11 a.m. March 20 at Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont. Naturalist Maeron Yeshiwas will explain how we can help pollinating animals, after which the group can taste the fruits of their labor.

The guided walk is free and no registration is necessary. Parent participation is required and masks are also required due to COVID-19 restrictions. Coyote Hills is at the end of Patterson Ranch Road near Paseo Padre Parkway. There is a parking fee of $5 per vehicle. For information, call 510-544-3220.

In line: This is only a partial list. For more information on Park District programs, visit the district’s website at

Ned MacKay writes about the sights and activities of the East Bay Regional Park District. Email him at [email protected]