San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy

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Birdwing Open Air Classroom at the San Dieguito Lagoon

The Birdwing Open-Air Classroom provides a shelter for people of all ages and abilities to learn about the river and the coastal area, including the San Dieguito Lagoon, the "gateway" to San Dieguito River Park. The lagoon has regional ecological significance providing food and shelter for endangered wildlife and migratory birds. Once the largest lagoon in the northern half of San Diego County, the lagoon wetlands were recently restored by Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric as mitigation for impacts created by the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.

The Birdwing Open-Air Classroom, designed by award- winning Spurlock Poirier Landscape Architects and the Roesling Nakamura Terada Architects, is the first educational gathering place at the Lagoon where people can learn about the river and the world around it. It seats approximately 80 people. Located south of Via de la Valle on the north side of the San Dieguito Lagoon, the project includes off-street parking, ADA access and connections to the Coast to Crest Trail and other Lagoon trails.

The total cost for the project was approximately $700,000. An initial $340,000 grant from the County of San Diego, courtesy of former Supervisor Pam Slater-Price, was received to start construction of the Birdwing. County Supervisor Dave Roberts secured another grant of $150,000. The Conservancy raised most of the remaining funds with major gifts from the D'Augustine Family Foundation, the Del Mar Foundation, the Hans & Margaret Doe Family Charitable Trust, Jimbo's Natural Foods, Joan Griffin, Kimberly Godwin and Tom Wilcox, Tom & Donna Golich, Stephen & Susan Hedrick, the Price Family Charitable Fund, REI, Dee Dee & Ned Reynolds, the William Schwartz, Jr. Memorial Fund, In Memory of Fred Belinsky, Seth Sprague Educational and Charitable Foundation, Solana Beach Civic & Historical Society, Snooze, an A.M. Eatery, Southern California Edison, the William Hall Tippett & Ruth Rathell Tippett Foundation, David & Ann Welborn, Whole Foods-Del Mar, and donations from many individual supporters.

We are still raising funds for the Birdwing Open Air Classroom. You can donate securely online by clicking the "Donate Now" button below.

Gifts are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law. Tax ID: 33-0191772. Photo Credit: James Coffee Studios

To learn more about this exciting project or donate by phone or post, please contact Trish Boaz, Executive Director at (858)755-6956 or trish@sdrvc.org.