Rake-a-Thon at Turtle Haven Preserve, WA

Saturday, October 8, 2022

9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Come join us for this Rake-a-Thon and other site prep projects that will clear the way for native meadow restoration at Turtle Haven.
  • Pre-registration is required
  • Youth volunteers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Each youth volunteer must register or be registered by parent or guardian.
  • Read our Liability Waiver here. You will be asked to check a box acknowledging you read waiver during registration.
  • Read our COVID-19 Event FAQ here. Friends is asking volunteers to provide proof of full vaccination. After you register, you will be asked to email a photo of your vaccination card or bring photo or physical card to event.

Project Background & Description

With the support of thousands of volunteer hours, this preserve has undergone incredible transition over the past 5 years with the persistent removal of various invasive weeds to enhance and protect the western pond turtle populations that inhabit this area. Western pond turtles are listed as endangered in Washington state and, in partnership with Washington Fish and Wildlife, all stewardship efforts here focus on protecting critical habitat. There are three primary ponds on site buffered by forest and meadows. The meadows had been overgrown with Himalayan blackberry among other invasive weeds. Now, after 5 years of removing weeds we are ready to seed and plant this fall! But first, we must tackle the crucial task of clearing out the dead plant debris to make room for native seeds. We will mostly be raking away dead non-native grasses and will also have other minor site prep projects.

W?e will break up the day and give our rake muscles a rest with a site tour and overview of restoration efforts at this preserve.

Physical work includes walking and raking light plant debris in an uneven dirt meadow. The project site is about a .25 walk along a grassy trail.

Site Notes: There is poison oak on site that we will identify and avoid. There is no official restroom.

What we provide:

  • Work gloves (you are also welcome to bring your own)
  • Rakes- we have a limited supply so if you have one please bring if willing
  • Energy bars

What you should bring:

  • Water and snacks
  • Leaf rake if you have one (we will have a few to borrow)
  • Sun protection (our work area has no shade, but our break areas will)
  • A pack to carry your personal gear
  • Vax card photo
  • Face mask and personal hand sanitizer

What to Wear:

  • Boots or sturdy sneakers
  • Long durable pants and long-sleeved shirt
  • Dress for weather: extra layers of clothing in case of wet or cold weather


  • 9:00 a.m. - Check in, introductions and safety check in
  • 9:15 a.m. - Hike to project site
  • 9:30 a.m. - Project orientation and Rake-a-Thon begins!
  • We'll take breaks and snack as needed and take a site tour
  • 12:45- wrap up and head back to parking area


A confirmation email with directions will be sent out 3-5 days before the event.

Questions? Please contact Sarah Skelly at sarah.skelly@gorgefriends.org or 503-501-6351.