Events & Activities

APRIL ACTIVITIES AT WILDER RANCH STATE PARK

Located two miles north of Santa Cruz, on Highway 1 (831) 426-0505

A Special Event!
Wilder Ranch State Park’s Garden Planting and Wool Day
Saturday, April 26, 2014 from 11 am to 3 pm
Every day is Earth Day but you can celebrate spring and help plant the organic heirloom vegetable garden at Wilder Ranch State Park in honor of Earth Day on Saturday, April 26 from 11 am to 3 pm.  The garden helps bring Wilder Ranch’s 1900s dairy ranch atmosphere to life.  This is a community and family-friendly event, with activities for everyone:  Children can plant and bring home their own heirloom bean in a recycled paper pot, and all visitors can enjoy living history demonstrations, sheep shearing, spinning and more.  Bring a pair of gardening gloves and sun hat.  Snacks, drinks, tools and seedlings are provided.  For more information, call (831) 426-0505. Wilder Ranch is located two miles north of Santa Cruz, on Highway 1.  The event is free and bicycle riding to the park is encouraged.  Day use parking fee is $10.00 per vehicle.

Wilder Ranch Living History Demonstrations and Ranch Tours
Weekends from 11 am to 3 pm
Tour of the ranch houses at 1pm

Visit an early day dairy ranch and step back in time to the late 1800’s at Wilder Ranch State Park. Weekends at 1pm, join the 1-hour tour of the 1897 Victorian home, 1896 water-powered machine shop, and other historic buildings. You can also play Victorian games or bring a picnic to enjoy on the front lawn, visit the farm animals and see what activities are taking place on the ranch this weekend; You may learn about hand quilting, watch blacksmithing, or wood stove baking techniques. Sunday, April 13 & 27, from 11 to 2 pm learn about hand quilting with master quilter Carolyn Miller.  Sunday, April 13 taste homemade cookies made on a wood burning stove with baker Glenice Magee. Call (831) 426-0505 for more details.

History, Nature, and Scenic Views:  A Tour of the Grey Whale Ranch Area
Saturday, April 12 from 9 am to 12 noon

Meet at Wilder Ranch’s Interpretive Center for a moderately paced three-hour guided hike to explore the natural and cultural history of the upper hills of Wilder Ranch State Park. Wear sturdy hiking shoes, bring water, snacks and lunch and dress in layers for changeable weather.  Call (831)426-0505 for more information. Hike canceled if rain.

Wilder Ranch Coast Nature Walks
Saturdays, April 5, 19, 26 from 11 am to 1 pm

On these two-hour natural history excursions you will explore the plants, animals, and geology of the spectacular coastal bluffs. Meet at the Wilder Ranch interpretive center for this 2.5mile easy hike. Bring a snack, water, binoculars, and good walking shoes.  Binoculars are available to borrow.  Walk is canceled if rain.

Events made possible by California State Park Docents, California State Parks and Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks

MAY ACTIVITIES AT WILDER RANCH STATE PARK

Located two miles north of Santa Cruz, on Highway 1 (831) 426-0505

A special event!
Life on the Ranch Day
Saturday, May 10, from 11 am to 3 pm
Join the fun with old-time activities from Santa Cruz’s old-west:  The rancho, dairy farm, and  cowboy rodeo days at Wilder Ranch. Docents will be hosting living history stations in the machine shop and blacksmith shed, along with wood stove baking in the Victorian home, tortilla making, roping and rope making, butter or ice cream making, crafts, games and wagon rides.
The event is held on the grounds of the Wilder Ranch State Park Cultural Preserve.  The park is located 2 miles north of Santa Cruz on the coast side of Highway 1 at 1401 Coast Road Santa Cruz, CA 95060.  Regular day-use parking fee applies ($10.00).   This event is appropriate for all ages and takes place from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m on Saturday, May 10. For more information, please call (831)426-0505.
 
Sketching Adventure!
Thursdays, May 8 and 22 from 1 pm to 4 pm
Join Wilder Ranch Docent, Artist Carolyn Fitz for a (free) delightful journey of sketching the interesting trees, Victorian house, barn, animals, artifacts from last century and much more. Carolyn will provide lots of demo's in a fun, engaging atmosphere for all.  Bring your favorite sketch materials and paper, campstool for sitting and dress in layers.  Beginners welcome!  Rain will cancel.  Meet at the Wilder Ranch Interpretive Center.

History, Nature, and Scenic Views:  A Tour of the Grey Whale Ranch Area
Saturday, May 17 at 9 am
This challenging guided three-hour hike will explore the natural and cultural history of the upper hills of Wilder Ranch State Park.  Meet in the Wilder Ranch Parking lot.  Bring good walking shoes, lunch, snacks, and water.  Hike is canceled if rain.

Wilder Ranch Coast Nature Walk
Saturdays, May 3, 10, 24, 31 at 11 am
On these two-hour natural history excursions you will explore the plants, animals, and geology of the spectacular coastal bluffs. Meet at the Wilder Ranch Interpretive Center. Bring a snack, water, binoculars, and good walking shoes.  Binoculars are available to borrow.  Walk is canceled if rain.

The History of Wilder Ranch: A tour of the Historic Ranch Buildings
All Saturdays and Sundays in May at 1 pm
Discover what life was like a century or more ago on this innovative dairy ranch.  The hour-long tour includes the 1897 Victorian home, 1856 Gothic Revival farm house, 1896 water-powered machine shop, barns and other historic buildings. 

Wilder Ranch Living History Demonstrations
Weekends from 11 am to 3 pm
Visit an early day dairy ranch and step back in time to the late 1800’s at Wilder Ranch State Park. You can also play Victorian games or bring a picnic to enjoy on the front lawn, visit the farm animals and see what activities are taking place on the ranch this weekend; You may learn about hand quilting, watch blacksmithing, or wood stove baking techniques. May 11 and 25 from 11 to 2 pm learn about hand quilting with master quilter Carolyn Miller in the Victorian. Call (831) 426-0505 for more details.

Events made possible by California State Park Docents, California State Parks and Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks

2014 Annual Interpretive Events at Wilder Ranch State Park

Life on the Ranch—Family Living History Days at Wilder Ranch State Park
Saturday, May 10, 2014, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, August 9, 2014, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 23, 2014, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Find out how families lived during Mexican Rancho and early dairy ranching days at Wilder Ranch State Park’s Family Living History Days. Activities include a selection of hands-on activities and demonstrations and may include draft horse wagon rides, branding, horseshoes, hand-making tortillas and salsa, chuck wagon style cooking, roping skills and lawn games. Come for a picnic on the lawn and follow it up with a game of tug of war, sack races, hoops, stilts, bubbles, and more! The event is held on the grounds of the Wilder Ranch Cultural Preserve.

Spring Garden Planting Day and Sheep Sheering
Saturday, April 26, 2014  from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Imagine yourself in the early part of the 20th century as we gather to plant heirloom vegetables as it would have been circa 1900.  There will be composting demonstrations, gardening information and garden crafts.  If the weather cooperates,we will aslo be shearing the sheep and demonstrating how wool is processed from "sheep to shawl."  Bring your gardening gloves if you have them.  The event takes place on the grounds of Wilder's cultural preserve.  Bring yourself, your family and friends--this event is appropriate for all ages and is a great way to contribute in honor of Earth Day!

Old-fashioned Independence Day - Friday, July 4, 2014  from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Have a grand time enjoying the 4th with a family parade at noon, old-fashioned games, live Big-Band music, and delicious food from 11:00a.m. to 4:00p.m. We'll be stepping back in time 100+ years ago to an ealy 1900's style Independence Day celebration including a noon family parade, games, children’s crafts area, live big-band music, living history demonstrations, historic speeches and flag-raising. To join in the old-tyme parade, dress up, bring an instrument or decorate a wagon, and join us by the chicken coop at 11:45a.m. The Suffragettes are sure to be there! Food and drink available for sale, or bring a picnic lunch.

Heritage Harvest Festival - Saturday, October 25, 2014 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Decorate a pumpkin, take a wagon ride, try your hand at some old-time harvest activities, listen to live bluegrass and western music, learn to square dance, play cow pie bingo, enjoy hand-cranked pumpkin ice cream along with tons of other fun on the ranch in celebration of the harvest season from 11:00a.m. to 4:00p.m.

Holidays on the Ranch - Saturday, December 13, 2014, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Celebrate the winter holidays as folks did in Californio, Victorian, and early 20th century Santa Cruz with crafts to do, games to play, cookies to decorate, and more from 11:00a.m. to 3:00p.m.

Events made possible by California State Park Docents, California State Parks and Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks