Dallas Sierra Club

Dallas Sierra Club News - February 2014

In This Issue. . .


General Meeting Program - February 11, 7:00 pm - Refreshments at 6:30

Tomato being injected by a syringeGenetically Engineered Foods
GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) are becoming more common in our food supply. Cindy Freeling has been in the nutrition and health business for over twenty years. She will explain what GMOs are and why they are a controversial subject, and will describe the impact they have on our health and our planet.

John Bunker Sands Wetland Center
Wetland center grasses and water
The John Bunker Sands Wetland Center is a manmade wetland that recycles millions of gallons of water daily to supplement North Texas municipal water supplies. It also provides habitat for over 347 species of birds and dozens of mammals, reptiles, and other wildlife, and provides a long term, sustainable solution for water supply. Come and experience the realities of our most precious resource, WATER, and discover how stewardship can be integrated into our everyday lives. The Wetland Center's director, John DeFillipo, will talk about leading the Center to become a premier example of environmental education with a strong focus on habitat and water conservation, public education, partnerships, and wetland research.

Everyone is welcome. You don't have to be a Sierra Club member. Just show up. We'd love to meet you.

Our General Meeting starts at 7:00 pm but come at 6:30 for snacks, information and fellowship. Our meeting takes place at REI, 4515 Lyndon B Johnson Freeway, Dallas, TX 75244. Click over to our General Meeting page of our website for more information and a map.


Well Water Contamination by Gas Drilling

Steve and Shyla Lipsky thought they had discovered their perfect Eden when they built their dream home on a beautiful bay in Parker County. They even had plenty of clean water from their well bored into the Trinity Aquifer. Wells in the area had been successfully producing clean water for up to 15 years. In late 2010 Range Resources tested at least 29 wells and claimed they were clean. But shortly after Range Resources drilled the Butler gas wellhead, area residents began having serious problems with their wells.

Read the rest of the story...


Advanced Backpacking Class - Wednesday, February 12 - Explore More of Our Special Places

Great - you have a few weekend backpacks under your belt; now you want to do more challenging backpacking to explore special places that are more remote or involve more technical or weather related considerations. This class will cover tips and skills for more advanced backpacking including discussions on planning for week+ long trekking, winter camping, fly-drive trips, and the gear, equipment, clothing, food planning, bear barrel packing and other issues to prepare. For more details please see the calendar below or visit our website.


Wilderness Navigation Class - Tuesday & Thursday, March 4 & 6 - Learn How to Find Your Way in the Wilderness

Learn the fundamentals of finding your way in the wilderness in this comprehensive two night class. Among the subjects covered are: looking for and purchasing different type maps, how to read maps, different kinds of compasses and how to use your compass, how not to get lost and what to do if you do get lost, There will be some discussion about GPSs, but our main focus is learning how to use a map and compass so you're not trusting your navigation (and life) to something that takes batteries. For more details please visit our website.


Go Solar

The topic of our December General Meeting was Solar Power for Homeowners. Our speakers discussed different ways to install a solar power system on your roof. They demystified the process of leasing or buying a system, and shared one homeowner's results of leasing a system. We learned how easy it is to add a solar energy power system to a home, and how much it can reduce your electricity bill because the price of solar energy has decreased a lot.

Here is a link to the slideshow that Plano Solar Advocates presented at the meeting. It includes a brief background on the growth of PV solar, a residential solar 101 section, and an appendix with information about starting a "solarize" program in your neighborhood

Find out how easy it is to "go solar" and how much it can reduce your electricity bills. Contacts:
Kirk Miller, Dallas Sierra Club, kirkmiller@juno.com, phone 972 699 1687
Larry Howe, Plano Solar Advocates, rlhowejr@gmail.com
Bob Litwins, Plano Solar Advocates, rlitwins@gmail.com


Calendar

Here is our calendar for the next two months. For complete listings, visit us at www.dallassierraclub.org.

Service Outing IconFeb 8 (Sat) White Rock Lake Cleanup
Walk and talk while helping to pick up trash and recyclables at the Sierra Club's adopted section of White Rock Lake Park. Meet at 8:15 AM at the Love of the Lake office on the Northeast corner of Garland Rd. and Buckner Blvd. Look for a crowd of people drinking free juice and coffee. Gloves, trash bags, etc. provided. Our area includes one of the wonderful prairie restoration areas, so there are always birds and wildflowers to enjoy. The lake and your karma will thank you. Brunch afterwards. Leader: Carol Nash Send Email 214-824-0244

Dallas Sierra Club Meeting IconFeb 11 (Tue) Dallas Sierra Club General Meeting
(1) Find out what GMOs are and why they are a controversial subject, and learn about the impact they have on our health and our planet. (2) Learn about the John Bunker Sands Wetland Center, which recycles water for municipal water supplies, provides habitat for fauna, and provides a sustainable water supply. Everyone is invited to the Dallas Sierra Club's General Meeting. Full details are on our home page now.

Class IconFeb 12 (Wed) Backpacking 201 Class - Explore farther, hike longer!
(replace this text with a short description of the image)Great - you have a few weekend backpacks under your belt; now you want to do more challenging backpacking to explore special places that are more remote or involve more technical or weather related considerations. This class will cover tips and skills for more advanced backpacking including discussions on planning for week+ long trekking, winter camping, fly-drive trips, and the gear, equipment, clothing, food planning, bear barrel packing and other issues to prepare. The class will meet from 6:30pm - 8:45pm in the Guadalupe Peak clinic room (2nd floor) at Dallas REI, 4515 LBJ Freeway, Farmers Branch, TX 75244 (north side of LBJ between Midway and Welch). Handout materials provided. The cost for the class is $15 for Sierra Club members and $20 for non-members (payment by cash or check, please). Please bring water bottle and writing utensil to take notes. No reservations - just show up. Contact: Liz Wheelan Send Email 214-368-2306

Service Outing IconFeb 15 (Sat) Trail Maintenance at Cedar Ridge Preserve
It's fun to get out to the Cedar Ridge Preserve to help upgrade some of the beautiful walking trails just south of Dallas. The address is 7171 Mountain Creek Pkwy, Dallas, TX 75249. It's a great morning workout, and the scenery is exceptional. No tools are required (maybe gloves), just show up and be ready to lend a hand or two. We'll work from 9 AM to 12 or earlier, and then walk around the preserve and admire the wildflowers and fauna! Bring some water, for sure. It's on Saturday the 15th of February, 2014, and please see the website at www.audubondallas.org/cedarridge.html for directions and info. The number is 972-709-7784. See you then! If you wish to carpool, then let me know and we'll arrange a meeting spot. Come on out and stay green! Contact: Ginger Bradley Send Email 469-223-7902

Dallas Sierra Club Meeting IconFeb 19 (Wed) Outings Committee Meeting
Meet upstairs at the REI Dallas store on the north side of LBJ between Midway and Welch at 6:30 PM to participate in planning trips. Outings leaders, prospective leaders, and people interested in outings are welcome. Ask Mark to be placed on the email list for an agenda. Organizer: Mark Stein Send Email 214-526-3733

Announcement IconFeb 25 (Tue) Solar Power For Homeowners
Attend an information session to learn about installing a solar energy system on your house. Plano Solar Advocates will show how easy it is to add a solar energy power system to a home, and how much it can reduce your electricity bill. They will educate, coordinate, and provide technical support for homeowners throughout the process. For more information click here or contact Larry Howe, Plano Solar Advocates, rlhowejr@gmail.com Bob Litwins, Plano Solar Advocates, rlitwins@gmail.com Kirk Miller, Dallas Sierra Club, kirkmiller@juno.com, phone 972 699 1687

Class IconMar 4 (Tue) Wilderness Navigation Class - Part 1 (aka Learn to Explore!)
Learn the fundamentals of finding your way in the wilderness in this comprehensive two night class. Among the subjects covered are: looking for and purchasing different type maps, how to read maps, how not to get lost, what to do if you do get lost, different kinds of compasses and how to use your compass. (replace this text with a short description of the image)There will be some discussion about GPSs, but our main focus is learning how to use a map and compass so you're not trusting your navigation (and life) to something that takes batteries. If you have a compass, bring it to the class. If you don't have one, we will have an extra you can use and will show you what to look for when you purchase your own. The class will be held at the Dallas REI store (Guadalupe Peak room, 2nd floor), 4515 LBJ Freeway, north side, between Midway and Welch. This two-night class (second night Thur., March 6) will begin at 6:30 PM and finish about 8:45 PM. The fee for the class is $15 for Sierra Club members and $20 for non-members. Cost covers both nights, payment by cash or check, please. Handout materials included. Bring water bottle and writing utensil for taking notes and writing navigation practice exercises. No reservations - just show up. A subsequent day hike with the class instructor will be offered to class participants who want to practice their new skills. Contact: Bill Greer Send Email 972-247-0446

Dallas Sierra Club Meeting IconMar 5 (Wed) Dallas Sierra Club Executive Committee Meeting
The Executive Committee (or Excom) is the elected governing body of the Dallas Sierra Club and meets at REI, 4515 LBJ Freeway, Farmers Branch, TX 75244 (north side of LBJ between Midway and Welch) at 6:30 pm. Contact the Dallas Group Chair for more information.

Class IconMar 6 (Thu) Wilderness Navigation Class - Part 2
This is the second night of our two part class. See the class listing above (March 4) for details. Contact: Bill Greer Send Email 972-247-0446

Announcement IconMar 6 (Thu) Solar Power For Homeowners
Attend an information session to learn about installing a solar energy system on your house. Plano Solar Advocates will show how easy it is to add a solar energy power system to a home, and how much it can reduce your electricity bill. They will educate, coordinate, and provide technical support for homeowners throughout the process. For more information, click here or contact Larry Howe, Plano Solar Advocates, rlhowejr@gmail.com Bob Litwins, Plano Solar Advocates, rlitwins@gmail.com Kirk Miller, Dallas Sierra Club, kirkmiller@juno.com, phone 972 699 1687

Service Outing IconMar 8 (Sat) White Rock Lake Cleanup
Walk and talk while helping to pick up trash and recyclables at the Sierra Club's adopted section of White Rock Lake Park. Meet at 8:15 AM at the Love of the Lake office on the Northeast corner of Garland Rd. and Buckner Blvd. Look for a crowd of people drinking free juice and coffee. Gloves, trash bags, etc. provided. Our area includes one of the wonderful prairie restoration areas, so there are always birds and wildflowers to enjoy. The lake and your karma will thank you. Brunch afterwards. Leader: Carol Nash Send Email 214-824-0244

Backpack IconMar 8-9 (Sat-Sun) Beginners Backpack Trip in Ouachita National Forest, Arkansas
We`ll hike a portion of the Little Missouri River Trail and the Viles Branch Trail in the Ouachita National Forest in SW Arkansas. Camp at Shady Lake Campground Fri night. Drive to trailhead Sat morning and hike about 6 miles to camp near one of many streams in the area Saturday night. Hike out about 4 miles on Sunday morning. This hike is rated moderate with a few hills and stream crossings. Some spots will be reserved for members of the Beginner Backpacking class. Leader: Mark Adams Send Email 972-658-1281

Dallas Sierra Club Meeting IconMar 11 (Tue) Dallas Sierra Club General Meeting - Maine Woods Photography
Maine Woods Photography - Scot Miller will discuss his seven-year effort photographing northern Maine for the new book, Thoreau, The Maine Woods: A Photographic Journey Through an American Wilderness, which combines contemporary imagery with text from Henry David Thoreau's classic collection of essays, The Maine Woods (first published 150 years ago). Everyone is invited to the Dallas Sierra Club's General Meeting. Full details will be on our home page about a month before the meeting.

Announcement IconMar 13 (Thu) Solar Power For Homeowners
Attend an information session to learn about installing a solar energy system on your house. Plano Solar Advocates will show how easy it is to add a solar energy power system to a home, and how much it can reduce your electricity bill. They will educate, coordinate, and provide technical support for homeowners throughout the process. For more information, click here or contact Larry Howe, Plano Solar Advocates, rlhowejr@gmail.com Bob Litwins, Plano Solar Advocates, rlitwins@gmail.com Kirk Miller, Dallas Sierra Club, kirkmiller@juno.com, phone 972 699 1687

Canoe IconMar 13-16 (Thu-Sun) Paddling Trip On The Wild Neches River
It's been a while since we've had a river trip due to the ongoing drought - or is it the new climate? It's time to get those dusty boats wet. This flat water canoe/kayak trip provides an opportunity for solitude while paddling the beautiful Neches River through the heavily wooded (and still wet) Big Thicket National Preserve in southeast Texas. The Neches River is considered by experts to be one of the top 10 flat water rivers in the lower 48 states. The trip starts at highway 1013 near Spurger and ends 39 miles downstream at highway 96 near Silsbee. The exact section paddled could change depending on river flow. This trip is now full. Contact the trip leader if you would like to be on the short wait list. Leader: Bill Greer Send Email 972-247-0446

Service Outing IconMar 15 (Sat) Upgrading Trails at Cedar Ridge Preserve
This will be a great opportunity to get out to the Cedar Ridge Preserve to help upgrade some of the beautiful walking trails just south of Dallas. The address is 7171 Mountain Creek Pkwy, Dallas, TX 75249. Its a great morning workout, and the scenery is exceptional. No tools are required, (maybe gloves), just show up and be ready to lend a hand or two. 'We'll work from 9 AM to 12ish, and then walk around the preserve and admire the wildflowers and fauna! Bring some water. There are 10 miles of trails! It's on Saturday the 15th of March, 2014, and please see the website at www.audubondallas.org/cedarridge.html for directions and info. The number is 972-709-7784. See you then! If you wish to carpool, let me know and we'll arrange a meeting spot. Come on out and stay green! Leader: Ginger Bradley Send Email 469-223-7902

Dallas Sierra Club Meeting IconMar 19 (Wed) Outings Committee Meeting
Meet upstairs at the REI Dallas store on the north side of LBJ between Midway and Welch at 6:30 PM to participate in planning trips. Outings leaders, prospective leaders, and people interested in outings are welcome. Ask Mark to be placed on the email list for an agenda. Organizer: Mark Stein Send Email 214-526-3733

Backpack IconMar 29-30 (Sat-Sun) Beginner Backpack Trip to the Caney Creek Wilderness
Join us for one of the Dallas Sierra Club's favorite local backpacking trips. We'll backpack in about 4 1/2 miles along Caney Creek, cross it a few times, and climb some small hills. After setting up camp near a waterfall, we'll do a short day hike as time and energy permits. For many of us this was our first Wilderness hike and it's still one of our favorites. Leader: Bill Greer Send Email 972-247-0446

The Dallas Sierra Club News e-newsletter, sent monthly (and occasional for late-breaking news or events), keeps you up-to-date on meetings, activities, issues and special events. Visit us at www.DallasSierraClub.org.
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