Just a reminder: Father's Day is this Sunday. And after presenting Dad with the card and the tie, consider taking him out to a regional park for a trip back in time.
There are at least two Father's Day adventures from which to choose, both hosted by naturalist Dino Labiste at Garin Regional Park in Hayward.
The first is from 10 a.m. to noon. It's a program about fire starting without matches or lighters. Dino will show how to do it the way the ancients did, with a bow drill to create friction; and with modern materials: a water bottle or aluminum can to focus the sun's rays.
Then from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., it's all about atlatls, which are prehistoric dart-throwing devices. Dino will demonstrate how to make a dart point out of stone. Visitors can try their hand at hitting a target with an atlatl-launched dart.
Both programs are free, designed for ages 8 and older; reservations are not required. Both meet at Garin's Red Barn Visitor Center. The park is located at the east end of Garin Avenue off Mission Boulevard in Hayward. There's a parking fee of $5 per vehicle. For information, call 888-327-2757, ext. 3220.
Tilden: A more strenuous way to observe Father's Day is also on Sunday at the Tilden Nature Area in Berkeley, where naturalist Anthony Fisher will lead a 3-mile hike to the top of Wildcat Peak. Along the way he'll talk about Tilden's natural and cultural history. Views from the top are spectacular.
The hike is free. Meet Trent at 11 a.m. at the Environmental Education Center, which is at the north end of Tilden's Central Park Drive. Bring lunch and water; the hike lasts until 2 p.m. For information, call 510-544-2233.
SIBLEY VOLCANIC: For a less strenuous Father's Day experience, try the Sunday Stroll from 10 a.m. to noon June 16 at Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve in Oakland.
It's a moderate, naturalist-led 2½-mile hike to see evidence of ancient volcanoes and explore present-day quarries and labyrinths.
The hike is free. Meet at the Sibley entrance on Skyline Boulevard just south of the intersection with Grizzly Peak Boulevard.
Ned MacKay writes a regular column about East Bay Regional Park District sites and activities. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.