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.
  • Be sure to review our age limit policy.

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.

Monday Trail Clearing and Weeding

Join us for a Monday morning of clearing non-native plants and maintaining trails.

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

Please note: participants must be registered by 4:00 pm on Sunday, December 3.

When: December 4, 2017, 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, Dec. 8.

When: December 9, 2017, 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 17 (out of 25)
  • Adult: $10.00
  • Child: $5.00
  • Supporter: Free
RSVP

Mistletoe and Winter Plant Walk

Join us for a Saturday morning walk. We will be on the lookout for mistletoe and seasonal fruit such as the "holly berry," beloved by birds. We will be walking on the Shady Canyon trail and learning about some of the native plants and animals of The Reserve. It will be a great morning to savor the smells, sights, sounds and breathtaking beauty of December in the wildlands. You will have the opportunity to decorate and take home your own mistletoe!

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

Please note: participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Friday, December 8.

When: December 9, 2017, 9:00 am – 11:00 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 24 (out of 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, December 8.

When: December 9, 2017, 8:00 am – 11:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Volunteers: Free
RSVP

Holiday Nature Crafting

Enjoy a cool, winter morning creating treasured keepsakes and personalized gifts made from natural and recycled materials.

Ages:  All

Participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm on Friday, December 15th.

When: December 16, 2017, 9:00 am – 11:00 am
Where: The Reserve at Rancho Mission Viejo Headquarters
Information: Available Spaces: 24 (out of 30)
  • Adult: $5.00
  • Child: $5.00
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, January 12th.

When: January 13, 2018, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 22 (out of 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

Participants must be registered by 4:00pm on January 12.

When: January 13, 2018, 8:00 am – 11:30 am
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Volunteers: Free
RSVP

Martin Luther King Jr. - Day of Service 2018

Enjoy a morning of service with Reserve staff and fellow volunteers as we beautify the grounds at our new headquarters. Taking place each year on the third Monday in January, the Martin Luther King Day of Service is the only federal holiday observed as a national day of service – a "day on, not a day off."

Please join us as we plant native plant gardens and create new teaching areas for our outdoor classroom.

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

Please note: participants must be registered by 4:00 pm on Friday, January 12.

When: January 15, 2018, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Where: The Reserve at Rancho Mission Viejo Headquarters
Information: Available Spaces: Unlimited
  • Volunteers: Free
RSVP

Lecture: Getting Friendly with Fungi

Explore the fascinating world of the kingdom Fungi with amateur mycologist Joanne Schwartz. She will describe methods for locating and identifying wild mushrooms in Southern California and beyond, as well as understanding their place in nature – oaks, pines, orchids and more are dependent on fungal associations. We will hear tales of fungal folklore and consider eating and growing them. Joanne will bring her collection of mushroom hunting gear and ID resources … and mushrooms too, if they are fruiting locally.

Her collecting in 2017 has focused in the Redwoods and southern Sierra, as well as Wyoming, Colorado and Utah. Her presentation will feature recent finds from these locations.

For a reference flyer by Joanne, please click HERE.

For more information on Joanne please click HERE.

Ages: 8 and up

Participants must be registered or on the wait list by 4:00 pm, January 16th.

When: January 16, 2018, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Where: Guest House in Rancho Mission Viejo
Information: Available Spaces: 34 (out of 35)

Fun Finding Fungi Mushroom Walk

What are Mushrooms and Why Do We Care?

Why do they grow with Oaks?

Can I Touch Them? Can I Pick Them? Can I Eat Them?

How to Find, Photograph, and Identify Fungi.

Explore the fascinating world of wild mushrooms with amateur mycologist Joanne Schwartz. If we are fortunate and get rain, we might find a wide range of fungal forms and species.

For a list of references by Joanne, please click HERE.

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, January 19.

When: January 20, 2018, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Where: The Richard and Donna O'Neill Conservancy
Information: Available Spaces: 24 (out of 25)
  • Adult: $10.00
  • Child: $5.00
  • Supporter: Free
RSVP

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