Kiwanis Memorial Preserve Park
Seattle Parks and Recreation Information:
(206) 684-4075 | Contact Us TTY Phone: (206) 233-1509
The dedicated volunteers at Kiwanis Ravine have begun a newsletter, the Heron Habitat Helpers’ Herald.
The public can enter shoulder areas of the ravine during daylight hours year-round. We recommend that the public not enter the steep ravine during the heron nesting season, February 1 through July 31, to prevent frightening parent birds away from nests – and leaving eggs and/or chicks vulnerable to predation.
See Kiwanis Ravine nest close-ups via streaming video at http://wdfw.wa.gov/wildwatch/heroncam/.
Click to skip down to:
4 a.m. - 11:30 p.m.
ABOUT THE PARK
Kiwanis Memorial Preserve Park is one block east of Discovery Park in the Magnolia neighborhood. This park was named the city's first Wildlife Sanctuary in 2010. It is home to Seattle‘s largest nesting colony of Great Blue Herons. The herons make their nests there from February through July or August each year; volunteers counted approximately 90 nests in 2011.
To view heron nests during the nesting season (typically February into August), the public can walk to a pedestrian bridge over the Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad track. For directions, go to www.heronhelpers.org. Only views are for about a month before trees leaf out.
To view forest restoration in process, visit a half-acre demonstration site at 36th Ave. W and Ohman Place, about a block north of W Government Way. Interpretive signs on a short trail explain the ecology of Kiwanis Ravine. This site overlooks Wolfe Creek below. This site is called Kiwanis Ravine Overlook.Acreage: 16
In the 1950s, the Kiwanis Club donated to the City of Seattle the northern half of Kiwanis Ravine. Land was added in the 1980s, mostly in the southern half of the ravine, through the efforts of Friends of Discovery Park and a committee chaired by Mary Hartnagel. A plaque honoring the work of Mary and her committee is located at Kiwanis Ravine Overlook. In 1993, the City of Seattle adopted a Green Space Policy. The policy included maps for more than 30 green spaces and aimed to preserve natural habitat, to mitigate noise and air pollution, to reduce the need for man-made storm water systems, and to preserve natural drainage. Kiwanis Ravine was one of the green spaces mapped in the policy.
In June 2006, the City transferred surface jurisdiction of street and alley rights-of-way that crossed or bordered Kiwanis Ravine from the Department of Transportation to Seattle Parks and Recreation, thus unifying management of the ravine. Later in 2006, with funding from the Pro Parks Levy, Parks bought the Stevens property at the confluence of the East and West Forks of Wolfe Creek, enlarging park acreage by a little more than an acre.
Heron Habitat Helpers (HHH)
In February 2001, Heron Habitat Helpers (HHH) was formed to preserve and restore Kiwanis Ravine and to assist its heron population. Formed as an adopt-a-park group, it was co-founded by Heidi Carpine and Donna Kostka, who served as co-chairs for the first three years. As of 2008, this group has more than 800 names on its mailing list and has raised almost $700,000 to begin restoration projects in the park. Restoration projects are often carried out through volunteer work parties. To take part in these activities or to volunteer for committees, please go to www.heronhelpers.org
Kiwanis Ravine in the Future
Since Kiwanis Memorial Preserve Park became a Wildlife Sanctuary, a group has been meeting regularly to write and accomplish a Habitat Advisory Plan. Parks staff, HHH volunteers, and a representative from Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife work together to set priorities. They include ways to improve habitat protection, outreach and education, partnerships, volunteers, and stewardship of resources.
Another HHH long range goal is to daylight Wolfe Creek from where it flows through Commodore Park to its original outflow into Salmon Bay, just west of the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks in the Ballard neighborhood. Today, Wolfe Creek flows into a culvert that joins a combined stormwater/sewer trunk leading to the West Point Treatment Plant. Now lost down a sewer drain, this creek water could someday be part of an estuary providing refuge to millions of salmon migrating through the Locks and Lake Washington Ship Canal.
To learn more about Seattle Parks and Recreation, including historic landmarks, military base reuse, and the Sherwood History Files, view our Park History.
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PROJECTS & PLANNING
Parks & Green Spaces Levy
Pro Parks Levy