Summer at Evergreen Park

Since our youth service-learning group adopted Evergreen Park for Arbor Day in 2010, we’ve been working in the woods improving the trail system, removing  invasive blackberry, re-vegetating areas with native plantings, and cleaning up litter. In summer 2013 we started scheduling park events more frequently and inviting other community members to join the fun and volunteer along with us. Now that we’re wrapping up our second summer of events, here’s a review of the incredible changes this season.

During our first event of the summer (June 28th), we cleared a large patch of blackberry at front end of the woods. By the end of the event, we had uncovered four struggling thimbleberries and found three different species of slugs!100_4786

For our second event (July 26th), the City of Hillsboro supplied us with a pile of wood chips to define the trail system of the woods. We continued defining the trails where we had left off in April. Mulching the trails helps distinguish them from off-trail areas, fill in uneven segments, and hold it’s shape through the rainy season.

For our third and final project of the season (August 23rd) 13 community volunteers teamed up with our group to help revive the woods. First, we spread a huge pile of wood chips onto the trails. Everyone worked so efficiently that the entire mulch pile was gone in the first 45 minutes!

After that, we moved deeper into the woods to remove blackberry. This group of volunteers showed their enthusiasm once again by working two blackberry hedges several yards back.

Check out the pictures from before and after the event!

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Thanks to our volunteers, the definition of the trails and diversity of vegetation is looking better than ever! Thank you!

The woods has come a long way since our 2010 park adoption, but there’s still plenty more to do!  All are welcome to help during any of our monthly fall dates –  September 27th, October 11th, and November 8th.  Be sure to bring your family and tell your friends!

Interested in joining the fun this fall? Let us know! Send your questions and RSVPs to

We hope to see you there!


Nature Exploration at Evergreen Park

Our most recent event at Evergreen Park was loads of fun. From uncovering buried thimbleberry plants to finding three different types of slugs on one log, we enjoyed our little adopted piece of nature while continuing the ongoing effort to remove the invasive blackberry that threatens to dominate the woods.

Interested in joining the fun? We have two more summer events scheduled on July 26th (this Saturday!) and August 23rd. If these volunteer events don’t work for you over the summer, don’t worry! We’ll have more events like these scheduled all throughout the year. Email to get involved. You can also periodically check our events calendar to keep informed about these and other Resources for Health events.

evergreen 26th INTERNET

Our Work in Evergreen Park

Since RFH Roots & Shoots adopted Evergreen Park in 2010, we’ve completed a number of successful invasive blackberry removals. Last summer, 2013, we really started to better focus our efforts in the woods, opening our events to more of the community and broadening our range of projects to include trail maintenance and planting trees and shrubs to replace the removed blackberry. This past April, we had two events at Evergreen Park, both of which were huge successes!
(Recap continued below)

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On the 19th, we held an event for a local Boy Scout troop, engaging about a dozen volunteers for six hours, removing over a truckload of blackberry and planting about 100 native trees and shrubs. Although the weather that day was a turbulent mix of rain, wind, and sun, the cover of the forest protected us from the elements, enabling us to comfortably complete the event. Thanks, guys, your enthusiasm was awesome!

On April 26th,  in conjunction with SOLVE‘s 25th annual sate-wide Solve It Earth Day event, over 70 volunteers of all ages joined us for four hours, planting 100 trees and shrubs and removing two truckloads of blackberry! We spread out over four locations, extending our reach from removing new sprouts in the front to the untouched hedges in the back of the woods. Because we had so many volunteers, we were also able to remove three bags of debris and mulch the trails closest to the woods’ main trailhead. We’d like to thank our partners at SOLVE (with special thanks to Melissa and Adrienne) and the City of Hillsboro, as well the individual volunteers and groups from Genentech, Cub Scout Packs 195 & 527, and the City of Hillsboro’s Team of Recreational Youth (TRY) who came out to volunteer in the woods. This event was our most successful effort yet in the woods of Evergreen Park thanks to all of these groups and many more individuals who volunteered!

These volunteer events have added such great memories to our adoption of Evergreen Park. There was phenomenal enthusiasm among volunteers of all ages as the removed blackberry piled up and we discovered wonders of the woods such as newts, worms, snakes, and an abandoned robin’s nest, as well as the trash that was discovered under the thicket of blackberry, like a manikin head named “Hairy Mitch” by the volunteers. The difference in the woods from before to after these events is remarkably visible, and would not have been possible without such passionate and efficient volunteers — thank you!

Are you interested in volunteering with us at Evergreen Park as an individual or group? Our next event is happening on May 11th as part of the annual Yale Day of Service, when the university’s alumni around the world gather to celebrate a tradition of service. Additional summer event dates are coming soon!  For updates, visit our event calendar, like us on Facebook, or email for updates by email.

UPDATE:We’ve now scheduled our summer events at Evergreen Park! We would love to see you at our upcoming events on June 28th, July 26th, and August 23rd!

RFH Roots & Shoots Update!

As a Roots & Shoots group, we focus on engaging youth to care for the environment, animals, and the community. As determined by our group members, each of our ongoing projects reflects one of those aspects:

On March 22nd, we completed the 2nd revegetation of Evergreen Park’s woods since we adopted it in 2010. We planted 50 Fir trees and 50 Alders in place of the invasive Himalayan Blackberry that dominates much of the woods.

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Animals:dog walking
Every week, members of our group volunteer to walk dogs at the OFOSA animal shelter in Aloha. About 8-10 rescued dogs get long walks to a nearby park within the 2 hours we are there.


Also on March 22nd, we celebrated both World Water Day and Dr. Jane Goodall’s 80th birthday with an H2Origami outreach party, and a reading of “Me…Jane” by Patrick McDonnell. We folded about 60 pieces of origami.

Interested in joining the fun? Meet us at our next project in the woods of Evergreen Park to celebrate this Earth Day or contact us at for information about the group! You can find more details about our upcoming projects on our events calendar.

H2Origami for World Water Day!

Folding parties for World Water Day will take place on the weekend of March 21st.IMG_0283

H2Origami is an ongoing campaign that uses art (namely, origami) made from natural and recycled materials to raise awareness about water issues and to advocate for clean and healthy waterways for people and wildlife. You can be a part of H2Origami this World Water Day by hosting an origami folding party!  Just follow the H2Origami’s Action Plan in six simple steps:

LEARN about a water related cause or issue. Try searching the internet for: bottled water, fracking, water privatization, oil spills, drinking water access, invasive species, habitat destruction, plastic in the ocean, local waterway pollution, etc. Chose an issue you are passionate about, perhaps related to a local waterway near your home or school.
CONNECT with members of your community by hosting a folding party.
FOLD origami for your cause.
WRITE on your origami to convey you message.
SHARE your origami messages with your family, school, community, and/or political leaders. You might consider sending your origami messages with a letter to your local government, or create a origami display at your school or library.
IMPLEMENT change to reflect the cause you’re folding for, and encourage others to do the same!

Are you ready to fold for water this World Water Day? Check out our map of events to see if there’s a folding party near you! Are you interested in hosting your own folding party? Just fill out the simple application here!

What’s Happening Lately

For MLK day, our Roots & Shoots group removed invasive blackberry from the woods of 100_2837 (Mikal & tree)Evergreen Park (our adopted park) with help from Kaiser Permanente employees.
On the 1st of February, our group planted trees and shrubs with Friends of Trees at Fanno Creek. 100_2854 (3 dogs)

We have also been walking and socializing dogs weekly at OFOSA in Beaverton.



Our program Wheel Solutions helped the Rotary Club of Portland-Westside deliver care packages to families in need for the 5th annual Kinnaman Elementary School Food & Toy Drive.

Interested in joining the fun? Check out our events calendar to see what events are coming up, and our Roots & Shoots page for more information about our group!