Music, song, dance and storytelling all will be part of the Gathering of the Ohlone Peoples on Oct. 7 at Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont, where a 2,000-year old Indian village site is preserved.

Scheduled from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., the annual event showcases the culture of age-old Native American tribal groups and histories of local tribal people. The Ohlone will demonstrate basket, jewelry, brush and string making and discuss their contemporary cultural involvements.

Visitors can try their hands at matchless firemaking, playing Ohlone games and making miniature tule boats, models of the ones on which the Ohlone once traveled the Bay. You can also taste native plant teas, manzanita cider and acorn soup cooked with heated stones in a basket.

Coyote Hills is located at 8000 Patterson Ranch Road off Paseo Padre Parkway in Fremont. Parking costs $5 per vehicle. The gathering is free of charge. For information, call 510-544-3220.

If you want to learn more about some of these ancient skills, you can sign up for any of three programs at Coyote Hills led by naturalist Dino Labiste.

From 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Oct. 6, Labiste will teach firemaking for ages 16 and older. From 2 to 4:30 p.m. that day he'll lead a rope-making clinic for ages 9 and older. And from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 13, he'll show how to make tools out of obsidian flakes for ages 18 and older.


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All three of Dino's programs are free, but registration is required. For information or registration, call 888-327-2757. Select option 2 and refer to program number 30137 for fire, 30138 for rope, and 30145 for stone tools.

GENERAL PLAN MEETINGS: The next in a series of public meetings to present the East Bay Regional Park District's draft general plan will be from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday at the Fremont Community Center, 40000 Paseo Padre Parkway.

Another is scheduled from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Dublin Unified School District board room, 7471 Larkdale Ave.

The general plan is a policy document that will guide the district's park acquisition, management, operation and other public services for the coming decade. The plan itself and the meeting schedule can be viewed online at www.ebparks.org.

SUNOL NIGHT WALK: The nighttime is the right time for increasing your knowledge of the natural world, learning survival skills, and reducing your impact on the environment. That's the theme of a nature walk planned by naturalist Cat Taylor at Sunol Regional Wilderness in southern Alameda County.

Cat will lead a family hike for ages seven and older from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday. It's free of charge, but registration is required and you have to bring a flashlight.

For registration and information, call 888-327-2757. Refer to program 30238.

ANTIOCH HIKE: How do wild animals cope with the scarcity of food and water this time of year? Naturalist Eddie Willis will show you how during a rugged two-mile hike from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Sunday, Sept. 30 at Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve in Antioch.

Because it's steep, the hike is for ages 8 and older. Meet at the uppermost parking lot at the end of Somersville Road, four miles south of Highway 4 in Antioch.

The hike is free of charge. Black Diamond has a parking fee of $5 per vehicle when the kiosk is attended. For information, call 888-327-2757, ext. 2750.

Ned MacKay writes a regular column about East Bay Regional Park District sites and activities. Email him at nedmackay@comcast.net.