Wildomar Marna O’Brien Park readied for the Rooted in Nature Craft Brew Fest May 18


Hundreds of volunteers from the Valley will be anxiously awaiting the arriving guests coming to the first Rooted In Nature Craft Brew Festival Saturday, May 18, at Wildomar’s Marna O’Brien Park, 20505 Palomar, Wildomar.

Never before have the residents of Wildomar, and the surrounding cities had an opportunity to enjoy a day of fun and live entertainment topped off by sampling some of the finest homemade craft beers in Southern California.

Not only is it to be a day of fun for the whole family, but an opportunity to help out thousands of youngsters in southwest Riverside County school districts who can enjoy a day out of their classrooms and learn about the wonders of nature found in the 8,000-acre Santa Rosa Plateau Nature Reserve on the plateaus above the Temecula Murrieta Valley during the school year.

Brought to the public by the dedicated members of the nonprofit Santa Rosa Plateau Nature Education Foundation and the staff and volunteers of the city of Wildomar the full festival will be featuring 30 expected breweries, live music including the premier Journey tribute band Lights, craft beer related exhibitors, a silent auction, a Family Wildlife Park area with unique activities and exhibits related to the natural world.

Many of Wildomar and surrounding city service agencies and goods vendors will be on hand to show their products and community offerings for young and old. There will be a variety of food trucks there to whet any appetite and offer cooling soft drinks or icy delights for the entire family while they enjoy the sights and sounds of the festival. The adults can steal away from the children for a time to fill their commemorative festival glasses with 2 ounces of sometimes never before tasted brews made by local brewers.

There is a cultural revolution sweeping the nation with the craft brew industry. For the past three years, the SRPNEF has seen the relationship between the industry and the use of nature’s own products to create tasty brews growing.

The Rooted in Nature Draft Brew Festival also fits in with the Murrieta/Wildomar Chamber of Commerce Southwest Riverside County Beer Week that begins May 13 and includes brewery bus tours to participating breweries and the Brew Masters Golf Tournament schedule Friday, May 17.

It was a natural for the SRPNEF to join hands with the city of Wildomar that considers itself as the “Gateway to the Santa Rosa Plateau Nature Reserve” on Clinton Keith Road to bring residents the first Rooted in Nature Brew Festival. Wildomar’s Marna O’Brien Park was a natural setting for the festival with its many recreational and public facilities and ample parking.

The gates open at 1 p.m. for the early access guests who purchased a $60 VIP ticket. The gates open for the regular festival guests at 2 p.m. who can purchase tickets at the box office starting at $39. Shuttles will be available from the parking lot to the main gate.

Once inside, guests will see centered among vendor and brewer booths a tent with dozens of items offered in the Helix Environmental Silent Auction. The auction results will be announced later in the afternoon. All profits from the silent auction will be donated to the SRPNEF programs and scholarships.

After visiting the many brewers and vendors, guests can enjoy other foods and nonalcoholic beverages in the food truck area in the center of the park. Just behind the food trucks will be a field of games and other fun activities for the children.

The percussion and guitar sounds of Jimmy and Enrique will ring out through the fairgrounds during the afternoons festival, their stage located near the game zone.

There is even more fun and educational activities at the far end of the grounds in the Family Wildlife Park for the adventurous families.

There will be many first aid, security and informational booths set up throughout the festival area until 5:30 p.m. when the vendors close out and the stage is prepared for the night’s main entertainment with the Journey Cover Band Lights that begins at 6:30 p.m. With a separate concert ticket or combo ticket, the Lights will have two performances the first set from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. and the second from 8 to 9 p.m. A $5 full pour beer cost will be available during the half-hour intermission.

The SRPNEF has its mission to “educate and empower youth to appreciate, preserve and protect nature. It is their passions to “reconnect a generation of youth to nature who have grown up indoors and alarmingly isolated from nature.”

They promise to “provide a learning pathway leading toward a life of environment stewardship.”

There is no better place for children to learn then at the Santa Rosa Plateau Nature Reserve at 39400 Clinton Keith Road in Murrieta.

The reserve preserves approximately 8,400 acres that include a number of native California plant and animal species, some on the endangered or protected lists, the Moreno and Machado Adobes historical buildings, miles of hiking trails, vernal pools, a visitor center and museum. The reserve is staffed by members of the Riverside County Regional Park and Open Space District and the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. There are several hundred volunteers and docents that assist with visitors and students coming to the reserve.

The reserve is open Tuesday through Sunday at 6:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. It is closed on Mondays. Information on the reserve available at www.rivcoparks.org or call at the visitors’ center (951) 677-6951. The SRPNEF information is available at www.srpnef.org or by calling (800) 369-4620.

Submitted by Santa Rosa Plateau Nature Education Foundation.