Milton and Harriet Goldberg Recreation Area is a neighborhood park in Sierra Madre, California. It was designed to provide the community with a passive recreation space for social gatherings, a place for quiet retreat, and a nature area for children to explore, play, and learn about local plants and animals. It uses only California native plants in a design that has shady areas with wood stumps and boulders to sit on, and sunny fragrant and flower flanked paths. It provides habitat for local butterflies and wildlife and saves water by using plants adaptable to the local climate. By featuring the aesthetic use of native plants, it has encouraged homeowners in the local area to reduce their water consumption by replacing their lawns and high water consuming plants with less water needy planting. It also captures and recharges storm water into the underlying aquifer.
The Sierra Madre Rotary Club members helped to install the plants when the project was constructed just over 10 years ago and has taken on the task of biannual maintenance of Goldberg Park. Twice a year the group gets together to do a maintenance workday which includes weeding invasive species of plants, pruning deadwood, adding some plants if needed, and spreading bark mulch to reduce weeds and help the planting by keeping the soil cooler and reducing evaporation. Without this maintenance the park would deteriorate and quickly revert to urban invasive weeds thus not serving its purpose of an aesthetic example of water savings and habitat creation in this semi-urban environment. The members of Rotary have embraced the workday tradition here and show up in large numbers to help. Last Saturday was a workday where the Rotary Club carried EARTH #1 to show others what a great time you could have to take care of the EARTH together.