You don’t have to be a student to take part in the Coyote Hills Regional Park Naturalist Programs — but the park’s wide variety of nature workshops is definitely kid-friendly. In the fall, programs at the park’s Visitor Center (8000 Patterson Ranch Rd., Fremont) take note of such natural occurrences as migrating monarch butterflies, changing colors of vegetation in marsh areas, and stopovers by waterfowl heading south for the winter. This weekend’s classes exemplify the something-for-everyone approach. On Saturday (10:30 to noon), photographer Don Jedlovec and naturalist Jan Southworth discuss the habits of hawks in their “Fall Raptor Migration” workshop, with Jedlovec’s photos of birds of prey in their natural environment and on the move to winter hunting grounds. The photos are also for sale — proceeds benefit the Coyote Hills Butterfly Garden. For more info: 510-795-9385.
On Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Ruth Orta (a member of the Ohlone tribe) and naturalist Beverly Ortiz demonstrate the art of “Acorn Soup Making” the old-fashioned way, by cracking the acorns with a mortar and pestle, winnowing and sifting, and stone boiling in the traditional Ohlone style. You must be at least fourteen years old for this class. Registration is required (at 510-636-1684) and there’s a $26 fee for residents, $30 for nonresidents. — Kelly Vance
Hot to Trot
Tour scenic Piedmont
Long ago in less enlightened times, one might have exhorted people who chose to go outdoors on Thanksgiving Day and run three miles to go out and work off all that turkey gravy and chocolate cream pie. Not any more. The modern runners participating in Thursday’s Piedmont Turkey Trot can take a break from their veggies and soy milk products by showing up at 8:30 a.m. in front of Piedmont High School (800 Magnolia Ave., Piedmont) with their registration in hand (you should have done that by November 23, it says here) for the three-mile jaunt through one of America’s ritziest communities. Age fourteen and under, $20; all others, $25. Top three finishers in each age and gender division get a prize — either a gift certificate for a turkey (hmm) or a pie. Now get out there and gobble. Active.com — Kelly Vance