nav-menu-lower-w-bdr-PNGv2 Employment-Jobs Kids I Want To... Get Involved Park Planning Stewardship - Resources News Publice Meetings


Browse classes and activities online, register online and make payments

Account Login Instructions for Acrobat PDF Icon - Pagelet
Create, activate or log on to an account online

Regional in Nature
Download the activity guide in Acrobat PDF format.

Contact Us
Custom-tailored programs please contact us by E-Mail

Outdoor Recreation Programs

The Outdoor Recreation Department, based out of the Tidewater Boating Center in East Oakland, provides a rich variety of outdoor programs throughout the Park District for youth, families, adults, and community partners. We educate participants on outdoor skills –like fishing, campfire safety, and kayaking equip participants with bikes, boats, and other gear, and empower participants and community partners to enjoy THEIR Regional Parks.






Below, you will find a general listing of our programs.
For information on class times, fees, and to register, visit:

Public Programs

Redwood Bowmen Archery Club instructors teach safety, proper gear care, aiming, and shooting technique, in beautiful Roberts Regional Park, high in the Oakland Hills. The club provides bows, arrows, and gear, and after a thorough introduction, students practice shooting under the careful coaching of certified instructors. Archery-2
Explore remote areas of the East Bay hills and sleep under the stars! Experienced recreation staff lead the hikes, teach the basics of gear purchase, packing, back-country cooking, and back-country safety, and facilitate a variety of wonderful experiences along the way. (This program will return in 2018.) Backpacking  
Bikes are a great way to get to and ride through your beautiful Regional Parks. Join Recreation staff on a weekend ride, and learn basic bike maintenance, bike safety, safe group riding skills, and more as you get a good workout. Biking  
Boat Trips to Brooks Island    
Join seasoned Dolphin Charters skipper Ronn Patterson aboard Delphinus for a relaxed, narrated boat ride to Brooks Island. Once on the island, enjoy a naturalist-guided, two mile hike around this beautiful preserve. Trips are offered in spring and fall. Dolphin-Charters-2
Join Recreation staff on a challenging and rewarding paddle and experience your Regional Parks, Lakes, and Shorelines from a whole new angle! Highly-trained staff teach water safety and basic canoeing technique, and we provide all gear as well as lifevests. Some trips also feature a naturalist. Canoeing  
Day Camps    
Park'n It Day Camp is a safe and fun day camp in the Regional Parks for 5 to 12 year olds. Our highly-trained and caring staff lead hikes, field games, fishing, arts + crafts, environmental education activities, and swimming. Camp runs Monday-Friday from 9am to 4pm at various parks.  Ask about our family discount (not available online). For more information and to register, please visit our Day Camp and Leaders-in-Training page.  Day-Camp  
Beginning anglers can learn the basics of trout fishing, cat-fishing and bass fishing at various District lakes or piers. Courses include instruction on fish habitat and ecology, knot tying, rigging, casting and gear selection. fishing middle harbor  
Fly Fishing    
Fish First! instructors teach this exciting introductory class geared toward the beginning angler. Learn the basics of fly-casting from certified instructors followed by classroom instruction. You will be introduced to knots, fly selection, reading the water, and more. Fly-Fishing  
Do you want to start a healthy hiking habit, but don't know where to start? Join Recreation staff for our free Hiking 101 classes. Our guides will teach map-reading and navigation skills, provide safety tips, teach you what to wear and pack for a hike, demonstrate useful hiking apps for smartphones, and lead the group on a moderately challenging hike in your Regional Parks.  Hiking-2
We offer a variety of kayaking programs for all ages, from skill-building to nature tours, taught by trained, friendly instructors. All classes include instruction on basic paddling techniques and are offered at various parks throughout the District. Kayaking  
This program gives teens an opportunity to learn what it takes to be a Recreation Leader.  They receive hands-on training, skills workshops, and community service hours while assisting our camp staff during Park'n It Summer Day Camp. For more information and to apply for this position, please visit our Day Camp and Leaders-in-Training page. LIT-2
Llama Experience


Under the guidance of George Caldwell, a “Llama Michie” with over 25 years’ experience, come meet the llamas and learn how to groom, lead and interact with these specially trained animals. A second program focuses on discussion of the role llamas played in the ancient Andean civilization and their role in the future. Llama  
Movie Nights    
FREE movies are shown in various parks in the spring and summer on our giant outdoor screen and all movies shown are G or PG rated. Come early to secure a seat and join the pre-movie activities. Movies begins at sunset. We suggest participants bring warm layers, flashlights, chairs, and snacks. Parking fees may apply. No pets allowed. Rain will cancel. Check our Activity Calendar for dates and locations. Movie-Night  
Pet Programs    
Pet First Aid/CPR: Join instructor Peter Pay to learn how to save a pet’s life during an emergency, minimize a pet’s trauma after injury, and safely transport an injured pet to the veterinary clinic. Learn basic first aid, including wounds, fractures, and more. Booklet and certificate included.

Off-Leash Dog Recall & Safety: Join a certified instructor from Metro Dog to learn valuable skills to train your dog to hike off-leash and how you can be a more conscientious trail user. Practice as a group during a short hike. Class suitable for social dogs that are good with dogs and people, and do not hunt.
Pole Walking and Pole Hiking    
Learning how to use poles helps walkers and hikers improve endurance, posture, balance, confidence and strength and enhances your enjoyment of the outdoors. All class levels focus on anatomically-optimal techniques to achieve your desired performance while learning how to avoid joint stress or strain. Instructor Jayah Faye Paley, an AFAA & ACE certified Personal Trainer, is the creator of the only comprehensive educational media on how to use poles, including two award-winning DVD’s. Pole-Hiking  

Community Partnership Programs

CO-OP '12 Tent SetupCommunity Outreach Outdoor Program (CO-OP)

The Community Outreach Outdoor Program (CO-OP) is a three-year partnership program with local non-profit organizations that features an annual camping trip and three day trips to the Regional Parks. Annual camping trips may feature hiking, field games, fishing, boat rides, and great campfires with s’mores. Day trips may feature hiking, biking, environmental education, swimming, and other fun activities. We provide campsite reservations, buses, food, equipment, recreation leaders to lead the activities, and lots of training and coaching for partner staff. We also provide access to our extensive camping gear library so that they can lead their own trips in the future. Partner staff commit to helping plan trips, promoting trips, completing trip paperwork, and supervising campers. 

If this partnership looks like a good fit for your community organization, please contact Recreation Coordinator Megan Seccombe at or (510) 544-2566 for more information. You can also complete the web-based application at the link below, or print out and mail the PDF application. This program is supported by the Regional Parks Foundation and focuses on communities that face socioeconomic, transportation, or other barriers to outdoor recreation.

CO-OP Partnership applications:

The application deadline for 2019 partners is January 31, 2019 

Past and Current Partners Include:

  • Acta non Verba
  • Alternatives-in-Action
  • Bay Area Outreach & Recreation Programs (BORP)
  • City of Oakland Office of Parks and Recreation
  • Family Support Services of the Bay Area
  • Lincoln Child Center
  • YES Nature-to-Neighborhoods
  • YMCA of the East Bay

caring and professional camp leaders.jpgDay Camp Partnerships

Our Park'n It Day Camp teams up with local elementary schools and non-profit organizations for a week-long summer day camp experience in the Regional Parks.  Kids 5 to 12 enjoy activities including, boating, hiking, environmental education programs, arts and crafts, field games, swimming and more, under the caring supervision of our trained Recreation Leaders. If you work for a school or community-based organization that serves kids who have socioeconomic, transportation, or other barriers to outdoor recreation, please contact Recreation Coordinator Philip Coffin at or (510) 544-2566, for more information. You can also complete the web-based application at the link below, or print out and mail the PDF application.

Day Camp Partnership applications:

Past and Current Partners Include:

  • Bowman Elementary School, Hayward
  • City of Richmond Parks & Recreation
  • Community United Elementary School, Oakland
  • Coronado Elementary School, Richmond
  • Family Support Services of the Bay Area
  • Grant Elementary School, Richmond
  • Harder Elementary School, Hayward
  • Hillview Crest Elementary School, Union City
  • Lazear Elementary School, Oakland
  • Monument Crisis Center, Concord
  • Parkside Elementary School, Pittsburg
  • YES Nature-to-Neighborhoods

Field Trip Programs

The Outdoor Recreation Department provides affordable biking, canoeing, fishing, and kayaking field trips for schools and community organizations. Knowledgeable Recreation staff provide the gear; meet your group at the park; and lead a safe trip at our Regional Parks, Lakes, Trails, and Shorelines. Trips are for up to twenty people and range from 1.5 to 3 hours, and costs vary, depending on group size and duration. We can lengthen the trip and accommodate more youth if we do activity rotations. Trips must be requested at least 60 days prior to the trip, and paid at least 30 days prior to the trip.
For more information, and to apply for a Field Trip, please call Recreation Coordinator Kelsey Gielen at (510) 544-2567 or...
Download the application, fill out and return to:

To apply for a free Shoreline Field Trip download the application, fill out and return to:

Download: Shoreline Field Trip Application Adobe Acrobat PDF

Recreation Department Staff

Mary Ellen Avery
  Recreation Supervisor   (510) 544-2558   E-Mail
Rose Schwarz
  Senior Office Assistant
  (510) 544-2557
Kelsey Gielen    Recreation Coordinator   (510) 544-2567   E-Mail
Megan Seccombe
  Recreation Coordinator
  (510) 544-2554

Recreation Leader Jobs

Do you know somebody who is passionate about outdoor recreation and skilled in backpacking, biking, canoeing, fishing, or kayaking? Most of our programs are led by our team of Recreation Leaders and we are always looking for new guides to join our team!

To apply for a position as a Recreation Leader, please visit:

Our schedule is flexible, and we provide thorough training. The pay ranges from $11.28 to $21.66 per hour, depending on experience. To learn more about part-time jobs leading these exciting programs, please call the Outdoor Recreation Department at (510) 544-2553.