Calendar

Programs are open to the general public, groups, & Reserve supporters.

All events specify a minimum age for participation.

  • Eight (8) is the minimum age for most Reserve events.
  • Some events require participants to be ages 12 & up.
  • FAMILY events welcome children aged 6 & up.
  • Refer to specific event listing for details.
  • Review our age limit policy by clicking HERE.

Pre-registration required for all programs.

  • Contact us for large groups or to arrange a special group outing.
  • Your registration enables us to contact you about program changes or cancellations. Please see our policy on Cancellations and Refunds.
  • All visitors to The Reserve must present a signed release waiver upon entry to the property. Families may submit a single form, as long as all entrants are identified on the form. Waivers are also available at the event.

Lecture: Fire Ecology

Join us and become more knowledgeable about the history and ecological role of wildland fire in Orange County, specifically on Rancho Mission Viejo. Get a better understanding of fire behavior, extreme fire weather, Red Flag Alerts and what this means to you.  Learn about the techniques used to manage vegetation in a wildland setting, what is fuel modification and how you can harden your home. See how the California Building Code and the California Fire Code influence new home construction.

Learn about the South County Fire Watch program and how you can become a Fire Watch volunteer.

Ages: 8 and up

Participants must be registered or on the wait list by 2:00 pm, September 10.

When: September 10, 2015, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Where: RMV Presentation Center
Information: Available Spaces: 13 (out of 30)

Astronomy Night

Orange County Stars

Please note this event and its wait list are both full please check the rest of the calendar for other opportunities to join us.

Visitors traveling to sparsely populated areas are usually delighted to discover how many more stars are visible than at home. If you’ve not yet caught a glimpse of the Milky Way, come out to The Reserve for Astronomy Night where you can still view many more celestial phenomena than elsewhere in urbanized Orange County!

Enjoy an evening outdoors, as you gaze into the heavens, learn the constellations, and peer through the telescopes of our volunteer astronomers.  Reserve astronomers are all volunteers who enthusiastically share their telescopes and expert sky knowledge with you. (BRING: Warm clothing, Red cellophaned flashlight, binoculars, optional beach chair.)

Interpretation Level: High
Difficulty Level: Easy
Ages: 8 and up

Please note: participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Friday, September 11.

When: September 12, 2015, 7:45 pm – 9:45 pm
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 0

Caspers Park Foundation Nature Talk

Reservations are not necessary for this event call Caspers Park Foundation for accurate seat availability.

This nature-themed lecture is held in association with the monthly meeting of Caspers Park Foundation (CPF) volunteers.

Subject: Night Time Insects

This event is presented by the Caspers Park Foundation. For information regarding this event, please contact the Caspers Park Foundation. For more info, email: CaspersParkFoundation@nullgmail.com or call 949-923-2210.

When: September 12, 2015, 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Where: Caspers Wilderness Park
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Parking fee (paid at Caspers Park): $5.00
RSVP

Nature - Brought to you by the letter S

Stroll with us on a scenic Family Nature Walk.  Decorate your very own walking stick to use along the journey down the Gato Trail to the Sister Oak.  Go on a scavenger hunt, in search of things that start with the letter “S” such as stink beetles, scrub jays, sages, sycamores, scat, seeds, spiders and  so much more.  Geared toward children but all ages welcome!  Enjoy this morning of fun while we walk on the wild side.

Interpretation Level: Medium
Difficulty Level: Easy
Ages: 6 and up

Participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm, on September 11.

When: September 13, 2015, 8:30 am – 10:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 19 (out of 25)
  • Adult : $10.00
  • Child : $5.00
  • Supporter: Free
  • RMV Resident: Free
RSVP

Owl Pellet Detectives

Join the fun while learning about owls and their pellets on this family friendly program. An owl swallows small prey whole - skulls, bones, claws, feathers and fur. The stuff it can't digest is formed into a pellet which the owl coughs up through its mouth. Pellets can provide many clues about what owls eat. We'll take a short walk to see where owls live, then each dissect an owl pellet to identify its contents!

Interpretation Level: Moderate
Difficulty Level: Easy
Ages: 6 and up

Please note: participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Friday, October 30.

When: October 3, 2015, 8:30 am – 10:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 25
  • Adult: $10.00
  • Child: $5.00
  • Supporter: Free
  • RMV Resident: Free
RSVP

Monday Trail Clearing and Weeding

Join Reserve staff for a Monday morning maintaining our trails!

Interpretation Level: Low
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Ages: 10 and up

Please note: participants must be registered by 4:00 pm on Sunday, October 4.

When: October 5, 2015, 7:30 am – 9:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Volunteers: Free
RSVP

Astronomy Night

Orange County Stars

Visitors traveling to sparsely populated areas are usually delighted to discover how many more stars are visible than at home. If you’ve not yet caught a glimpse of the Milky Way, come out to The Reserve for Astronomy Night where you can still view many more celestial phenomena than elsewhere in urbanized Orange County!

Enjoy an evening outdoors, as you gaze into the heavens, learn the constellations, and peer through the telescopes of our volunteer astronomers.  Reserve astronomers are all volunteers who enthusiastically share their telescopes and expert sky knowledge with you. (BRING: Warm clothing, Red cellophaned flashlight, binoculars, optional beach chair.)

Interpretation Level: High
Difficulty Level: Easy
Ages: 8 and up

Please note: participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Friday, October 9.

When: October 10, 2015, 7:15 pm – 9:15 pm
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 0

Lecture: Woodpeckers, Carpenters of the Bird World

Equipped with a number of amazing and unique adaptations for a life spent excavating cavities, foraging upright and deep inside dying trees, this family of birds holds a critical place in the natural world.  No one is more enthusiastic about woodpeckers than Gillian Martin, Program Director of the Cavity Conservation Initiative.  She will focus on the biology of woodpeckers and quickly review those of our region.  Please join us for this informative and interesting lecture!

Ages: 8 and up

Participants must be registered or on the wait list by 2:00 pm, October 15.

When: October 15, 2015, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Where: RMV Presentation Center
Information: Available Spaces: 26 (out of 30)

Saturday Trail Clearing and Weeding

Volunteer to spend a few hours in beautiful surroundings helping make The Reserve trails accessible to our visitors. Join the crew dedicated to protecting our native ecosystems by maintaining trails and eliminating weeds. Volunteer efforts make an impact! Drinks and snacks provided. (BRING: Work gloves if you have them).

Interpretation Level: Low
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Ages: 10 and up

Please note: participants must be registered by 4:00 pm on Friday, October 16.

When: October 17, 2015, 8:00 am – 11:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Volunteers: Free
RSVP

Monday Trail Clearing and Weeding

Join Reserve staff for a Monday morning maintaining our trails!

Interpretation Level: Low
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Ages: 10 and up

Please note: participants must be registered by 4:00 pm on Sunday, November 1.

When: November 2, 2015, 7:30 am – 9:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Volunteers: Free
RSVP

Bird Safari

Would you like to learn to identify some of our local feathered friends? Are you ready to start your “life list?” Enjoy a fall morning with docent and bird expert Diane Etchison, while quietly combing The Reserve for our resident and migrant birds.

This is a bird count and will take place alongside a private road.  Participants will drive from site to site to look, listen and count the birds.

Interpretation Level:  Medium
Difficulty Level:  Easy
Ages: 8 and up

Please note: participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Friday, November 6 .

When: November 8, 2015, 7:30 am – 10:00 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 25
  • Adult: $10.00
  • Child: $5.00
  • Supporter: Free
RSVP

Morning Gratitude Hike

Experience the wonder of movement as we take you from being stressed to feeling blessed. Life will slow down… as we slow down to appreciate the beauty of the hills and canyons.   We will enjoy the majestic oaks, the rich smells of the sages, the crisp air and expansive sky and we will take time along the trail to appreciate all that is around us by writing in a gratitude journal. Finish this hike with a sense of openness, balance and positive energy.

Interpretation Level: Medium
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Ages: 8 and up

Please note: participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Friday, November 13.

When: November 14, 2015, 7:00 am – 9:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 25
  • Adult: $10.00
  • Child: $5.00
  • Supporter: Free
RSVP

Saturday Trail Clearing and Weeding

Volunteer to spend a few hours in beautiful surroundings helping make The Reserve trails accessible to our visitors. Join the crew dedicated to protecting our native ecosystems by maintaining trails and eliminating weeds. Volunteer efforts make an impact! Drinks and snacks provided. (BRING: Work gloves if you have them).

Interpretation Level: Low
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Ages: 10 and up

Please note: participants must be registered by 4:00 pm on Friday, November 13.

When: November 14, 2015, 8:00 am – 11:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Volunteers: Free
RSVP

Hike off your Thanksgiving Feast + Picnic

Bring your Thanksgiving leftovers and join us for a post-holiday picnic and hike. We'll hike up the North Ridge trail, take a shortcut to Wilson's Camp, and enjoy our lunches at the picnic tables under the oak trees. We'll then head back down the Sycamore Loop Trail. Savor the sights, smells and sounds of late autumn in the wildlands, as well as beautiful pastoral views from North Ridge.

Interpretation Level: Minimal
Difficulty Level: Moderate to Strenuous
Ages: 8 and up

Please note: participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Wednesday, November 25.

When: November 27, 2015, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 25
  • Adult: $10.00
  • Child: $5.00
  • Supporter: Free
  • RMV Resident: Free
RSVP