Wildlife efforts in the Central Valley
You don't have to be one wild and crazy guy or gal to enjoy Walk on the Wildside, an outdoor festival sponsored by the Stone Lakes National Wildlife Refuge.
The free family-oriented event features wild animal presentations, conservation exhibits and tours of wetlands, riparian forests and heron rookeries from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at the Beach Lake picnic area near the town of Freeport.
The celebration highlights local efforts to protect and restore native Central Valley habitats and wildlife. Visitors are asked not to bring dogs or alcohol.
For more information, visit www.fws.gov/stonelakes or call (916) 875-9453.
Learn by listening
Several regional groups are offering informative talks this week:
The Rooster Tails Fishing Club will host a program on shad fishing in the Sacramento, American and Feather rivers Friday at the Elks Lodge, 195 Pine St., Auburn. Doors open at 7 a.m., a $12 buffet breakfast will be served from 8 to 9 and the program begins at 9. For more, visit www.roostertailsfishingclub.org or call (530) 887-0479.
Learn about 1,500 species of bees at the Sacramento Audubon Society meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Effie Yeaw Nature Center in Ancil Hoffman Park. Admission and parking are free; www.sacramentoaudubon.org or (916) 489-4854.
Lake Tahoe resident and author David C. Antonucci will present a free illustrated program on the history of the 1960 Winter Olympics at Squaw Valley and Lake Tahoe at noon Friday at the Auburn Library, 350 Nevada St., Auburn. (530) 613-1153.
Machu Picchu and the Amazon rain forest will be explored during a free seminar at 2 p.m. Saturday at Vertical Horizons Travel, 102 Russler Lane, Folsom; www.verticalhorizonstravel. com or (916) 983-8651.
Professional photographer Lewis Kemper will speak from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday at the Effie Yeaw Nature Center in Ancil Hoffman Park. The fee is $5 per person. Registration is required by going to www.sacnaturecenter.org or calling (916) 489-4918.
The Wakamatsu Colony Festival will celebrate Japanese culture from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Wakamatsu Tea & Silk Colony Farm, 941 Cold Springs Road, Placerville.
Activities include sword demonstrations, taiko drumming and traditional Japanese arts and crafts. Sushi, sake and wine will be available. Participants are asked not to bring dogs.
The event, sponsored in collaboration with the Japanese American Citizens League, supports the American River Conservancy's effort to rejuvenate the historic Wakamatsu colony and establish a permanent landmark.
Advance tickets are $15 for adults, $7 for ages 10-18 and free for ages 9 and younger. Same-day tickets will be $20 for adults and $10 for youths.
For more information, call (530) 621-1224 or go to www.arconservancy.org.
Ring around the moon
Sun worshippers are eagerly anticipating an annular eclipse the afternoon of May 20. This phenomenon occurs when the moon's apparent diameter is smaller than the sun, blocking most of the sun's light and causing the sun to look like an annulus (ring) against the moon's silhouette.
Truckee will celebrate the eclipse along with the fifth anniversary of the FiftyFifty Brewing Co. from noon to 8:30 p.m. Sunday at the brewery, 11197 Brockway Road, Truckee.
In addition to eclipse viewing, there will be a bounce house, family games, music and a barbecue.
Tickets include viewing glasses and a food ticket. Advance tickets are $14 for adults and $7 for ages 4-12. Tickets at the door will be $16 for adults and $8 for children. The event is free for ages 3 and younger.
A portion of the proceeds benefits the High Fives Foundation, a Tahoe-based nonprofit organization dedicated to athletes who have suffered a life-altering injury while pursuing winter sports.
To learn more, go to www.fiftyfiftybrewing.com or call (530) 587-2337.