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Since 1996, the Ivan Dickson Volunteer Trail Maintenance Program has managed 121 trail projects with 6,036 volunteers contributing over 25,000 hours of volunteer labor.


arrow This project was nominated for a Partnership Award as part of the 2008 National Trails Awards, announced at the 19th National Trails Symposium in Little Rock, Arkansas.


REI funds volunteer trail programs for East Bay Regional Park District

photo of tee shirt

"Get Dirty" is the slogan of t-shirts provided by REI


The East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD)’s Ivan Dickson Volunteer Trail Maintenance Program has formed a lasting partnership with the outdoor equipment and clothing retailer, Recreational Equipment Incorporated (REI), dating back to 1992 when EBRPD and REI co-hosted the first annual National Trails Day. Building on this relationship, the Ivan Dickson Program and REI successfully co-sponsored five trail maintenance projects between June 1, 2006 and May 31, 2008 which resulted in 227 volunteers contributing 908 volunteer hours.

The Ivan Dickson Program is currently a part–time volunteer program managed by two staff members who typically average 8-10 trail maintenance projects per year. By partnering with REI, our public agency receives additional support and benefits in the form of promotion and recruitment of volunteers through their website and in-store announcements, financial or in-kind contributions for refreshments and lunch picnics, and acknowledgements for the volunteers via goody bags and commemorative t-shirts.

The Ivan Dickson Program has been invited to submit conservation grant applications to REI and has been successful to date in receiving two grant awards in 2006. The Ivan Dickson program partnership also attracts other partners to join and provide donated coffee, lunch items, and energy bars. Together, both organizations are committed to minimizing picnic waste generated at the trail days and have agreed to equally contribute biocompostable picnic ware (plates, cups, utensils, napkins, and waste bags) to our joint events, which has resulted in a 75% reduction in waste sent to the landfills.

photo of group at trailhead

Volunteer group orientation at the trailhead

Partnership projects with REI

June 3, 2006: The Ivan Dickson Volunteer Trail Maintenance Program and Tilden Nature Area staff hosted 50 volunteers who contributed 200 hours of volunteer labor rehabilitating the Canyon and Pine Trails at the Tilden Nature Area on National Trails Day. Volunteers pruned and brushed overgrown vegetation along the trail, installed drain dips and outsloped the trail tread. Project co-sponsors included REI and Merrell Footwear.

October 14, 2006: Twenty-two volunteers on a trail improvement project on the Briones to Mt. Diablo Regional Trail in Walnut Creek contributed 88 hours of volunteer labor installing hog wire fencing to define the trail corridor and building a 32-foot long recycled plastic crib retaining wall to repair a landslide. Volunteers also outsloped and rebenched segments of trail. This project was sponsored by an REI Conservation grant awarded to the Ivan Dickson Program in the amount of $4,000.

April 21, 2007: 81 Ivan Dickson Program volunteers contributed 324 hours maintaining trails and planting native vegetation at Las Trampas Regional Wilderness in celebration of Earth Day. Volunteers performed basic trio trail maintenance (slough, berm, and brushing) and installed drainage swales on the Chamise, Sycamore, and Las Trampas Ridge Trails. EBRPD Wildlife Partners volunteers planted three oak trees and 24 native plants to improve wildlife habitat. Participants included REI staff, the Hayward Hiking Club, and Brownie Troop #2659 from Castro Valley. Project supporters included REI, Peet’s Coffees and Teas, Casa Orozco, and Mr. Don Holcomb. EBRPD Board Member Beverly Lane welcomed the volunteers.

photo of workers on trail

A volunteer Trail Crew on Mount Diablo

June 2, 2007: REI’s Fremont Store participated in the 15th Annual National Trails Day/REI Service Project with the Ivan Dickson Program at Sunol Regional Wilderness. Under the supervision and guidance of EBRPD Crew Leaders, 48 volunteers contributed a total of 192 hours improving approximately two miles of the Canyon View Trail using a variety of hand tools, including McLeods, Pulaskis, digging bars, and loppers. The volunteers performed tasks such as rebenching, outsloping, and brushing to improve drainage and public access on this popular trail. Participants included Fremont Boy Scout Troop members, the Hayward Hiking Club, the Trail Trekkers, families, and individuals.

May 10, 2007: Volunteers contributed 104 hours of volunteer labor at Las Trampas Regional Wilderness. Volunteers removed old timber stairs on the Mahogany trail and pruned the entire length of the Chamise trail. Board Director Beverly Lane welcomed the volunteers. REI assisted in promotion and recruitment for the event and provided energy bars to the volunteers.


For more information:

East Bay Regional Park District
Ivan Dickson Volunteer Trail Maintenance Program
2950 Peralta Oaks Ct., Oakland CA 94605
Phone: 510-544-2602 Fax: 510-547-1619

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