2017 Events at Fort Ross State Historic Park

Ongoing Events:
Fort Ross Conservancy 2017 Board Meetings: February, April , June , August , October, and December. Most board meetings take place at Fort Ross State Historic Park but we occasionally meet in Petaluma. If you plan on attending please review the board policy for attending the meetings and contact us ahead of time to verify the location of the meeting.
Upcoming Marine Mammal Monitoring Events:
Harbor Seal Surveys
Assist us with our citizen scientist effort monitoring the harbor seals that haul out along our coast. After meeting at the FRSHP Visitor Center, our surveys begin roadside at Highway One Mile Marker 33.52, just north of the park entrance. These almost two mile low-tide shoreline surveys end at Fort Ross Cove and take about two hours’ time.
Steller Sea Lion Surveys: Contact Hank Birnbaum at hankb@fortross.org for survey dates.
Call House tours – Volunteers maintain the historic garden and give guided house museum tours on the first weekend of each month from 1 to 4pm. Many of the furnishings belonged to the Call family.
Windmill Turning – Fort Ross Windmill is undergoing repairs due to storm damage. Windmill turning will resume on its regular schedule after the repairs are completed.


Sunday, January 1st, 2017, 10am: First Day Hike

Join us on Monday, January 1st for the First Day Hike at Fort Ross State Historic Park starting at 10am. Meet at Reef Campground Trailhead. Bring water, bag lunch, binoculars, cameras, hiking sticks and hiking boots. For more information call 707-847-3437 or email info@fortross.org.




Saturday, January 21st: Kolyadki

Winter Village Celebration with Kedry families. Villagers start Winter Celebration with “visitations” to different buildings inside the fort singing “Carole” songs. Some of the songs are very old and some are funny; most of them have words of gratitude and blessings. The “hosts” give the visitors treats. Traditionally it ends with the feast and then more community singing and dancing if weather permits.



Saturday, April 22nd, 11am – 3:30pm at Fort Ross SPRING CELEBRATION

Join us on Earth Day for our Spring Celebration, Krasnaya Gorka, as the beautiful families from Kedry and talented women of Kitka formally welcome the new season. It’s also an opportunity to celebrate Robin Joy Wellman’s long and productive tenure at Fort Ross– after 27 years, Robin will be leaving Fort Ross for new opportunities. There will be traditional Russian Spring calling songs, circle dances, and games with Kedry & Kitka Women’s Vocal Ensemble, as well as a bench dedication, Kashaya and Church blessings, and potluck to recognize Robin’s many years of service. Free (but park entrance fees apply).

Schedule (subject to change):

  • 11:00am Dance, games, and song with Kedry and Kitka
  • 11:45am Opening blessing
  • 12:00pm Presentations by California State Parks and Friends in honor of Robin Joy Wellman; bench dedication
  • 1:15pm Potluck
  • 2:00pm Dance, games, and song with Kedry and Kitka

Saturday, May 20th: Alaska Native Day


Fourth Annual Alaska Native Day to celebrate the Alaska Native history at Fort Ross/Metini and to build community among the Alaska Nativepeople. Kayak race, crafts, dance performance, story telling, and games. Come learn about the Alaska Native community at Fort Ross.

Guests walk to Sandy Cove (20-30 minutes)10:30 SANDY COVE
Kashia welcome the Tlingit/ Haida/ Tsimshian to Metini
Tlingit blessing
10:45 John Sperry Memorial Kayak Race – Traditional skinboat race
Hunting demonstrations
Nigilax^ build – Marc Daniels, Mind’s Eye Manufactory
Lunch Opens – Aunty Mary’s Food Shack will sell Kashia Tacos
and fry bread treats
Tribal Style Beads for sale
Silent Auction Opens
11:45-12:30 MAGAZIN
Marine Mammals & Russian American Company Fur Trade Interpretation
12 – 3  MAGAZIN Hearst Museum of Anthropology Displays of Halibut Hooks

Kids crafts
12:30 FORT COMPOUND                                                                                                                                          SOUTHERN_WINDS
Story sharing – Bob Sam, Tlingit Storyteller from Sitka
Alaska Native Games – Spear throwing and chance games
Marine Mammal Interpretation – Join the Fort Ross Conservancy Marine Mammal Monitoring staff and volunteers to scope out our harbor seals, learn about nearby sea lions. Maybe we will see a whale!
Southern Wind Dancers
4:00 Silent Auction Ends

No event fee, but California State Parks entrance fees apply ($8/car) Questions? Contact Fort Ross Conservancy at info@fortross.org


June 24-25, 2017: Snapshot Cal Coast – Salt Point State Park BioBlitz

Dust off your rubber boots. Dig out your Chacos or Tevas. Grab a tide table and a friend. Get your cameras and smartphones ready!

Join Fort Ross Conservancy and Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods as we come together for the statewide movement lead by The California Academy of Sciences to get out to the coast, search for as many creatures as we can find, and share the photos of our discoveries on the website and app, iNaturalist.

We will be meeting at Salt Point State Park at 7 am to witness as much of the – 1.6 tide at 5:45 am as possible. Free camping will be available at Salt Point to those who Register Here, so bring your tents, sleeping bags, meals, and s’mores ingredients! We will be camping in groups, first 24 to register only will camp for free.

June 24: 7am – 10am Tidepooling at Salt Point State Parks ‘Salt Point’ (drive to day use parking at Gerstle Cove, walk to the end of the paved trail), 10:30am – 1pm. Intro to iNaturalist at Fort Ross State Historic Park, Auditorium, followed by time together in the FRC library to ID species found & upload to iNat. The rest of the day is yours to enjoy!

June 25: 7am – 10am Tidepooling at Salt Points Gerstle Cove MPA (park at Gerstle Cove day use, walk down to cove below Visitor Center), 10:30am – 1pm collaborative ID – FRC library (optional).

What to bring – Your smart device or camera, rain boots or other shoes ok with getting wet, warm layers, sun hat, sunscreen, lunch, snacks, water. If camping – tent, sleeping bag, more warm layers, camp stove & all cookware, meals, water, firewood is for sale at Salt Point.

Snapshot Cal Coast is a California statewide effort to document our coastal biodiversity and hold a series of BioBlitzes up and down the California Coast, focusing on intertidal zones in marine protected areas (MPAs). We will be working together with the MPA Collaborative Network and other partners to create a “snapshot” in time of where species are located along our coast.

The California Academy of Sciences and the Marine Protected Area Collaborative Network, with funding through the Sustaining California’s Ocean program of the Resources Legacy Fund Foundation, are coordinating Snapshot Cal Coast 2017.

Contact Sondra Hunter for more info at songh@fortross.org. Event brought to you by Fort Ross Conservancy & Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods, in partnership with California State Parks and The California Academy of Sciences.


Saturday, July 29th: Fort Ross Festival

California State Parks and Fort Ross Conservancy are pleased to welcome you to Fort Ross Festival where we celebrate the wonderful diverse international flavors and cultures of Fort Ross. This year’s event will highlight the Kashia, Russian, Alaska Native, and California ranch era peoples who have called Fort Ross home over the centuries. We’ll offer costumed historical vignettes, hands-on crafts, horse and buggy rides, Russian bell ringing, music & dance from numerous cultures, an international food bazaar — and of course, the Fort Ross Beer Garden! Get your tickets now!
Driving to Fort Ross Festival with an extra seat in your car? Or — looking for a ride to Fort Ross Festival? Visit our page ridevu.com/events/1820 and share your ride.


Saturday, August 12th: Metini Day 11am – 6 pm

SuNuNu Shinal Pomo Dance Group is hosting the second annual Metini Day at Fort Ross. This event is open to all, so come on out and help celebrate this special place. There will be arts & crafts and food booths. All native dance groups interested in dancing at this event, please message the group at their Facebook page.



Wednesday, August 16, 2017 2:30pm – 4:30pm

Archaeologists, researchers, and divers are documenting the remains of the Sonoma coast’s lumber ports, known as doghole ports. Fieldwork is being conducted on land and underwater to illuminate the region’s maritime cultural landscape. The project’s goals are to reveal our shared maritime heritage and to better protect and promote the connections present day communities have to their local history.

Come down to an open house at the Fort Ross State Historic Park Visitor Center and learn more about the initiative. Team members will be there to answer questions and share their findings. Project partners include NOAA’s Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary, California State Parks, Sonoma State University, and Fort Ross Conservancy. Click here for the event flyer.

Additional project information can be found at: http://farallones.noaa.gov/heritage/doghole.html


Saturday, October 14th: Harvest Festival is canceled due to the fires in our community.

Join Fort Ross Conservancy, California State Parks, and the Fort Ross-Seaview Winegrowers Association at our annual Fort Ross-Seaview Wine and Harvest Festival for an incredible day of world-class Wine Tasting, delicious local foods, music and much more, all set on the spectacular Sonoma Coast at Fort Ross State Historic Park.




Fort Ross Choir Performance Saturday, December 9th, 12-3 pm Fort Ross Auditorium

We invite our friends, members, and local community to join us on December 9th at 12pm for our annual holiday party. FRC will bring a few hearty main dishes to share. Please bring a side, salad, or dessert for the table. We can enjoy the afternoon together and ready ourselves for the new year. At 2pm Fort Ross Choir will be performing Tchaikovsky’s “Legend,” A holiday Madrigal from the late renaissance by Orazio Vecchi, Mozart’s Ave Verum, the Coventry Carol, and a surprise arrangement of “Because” by the Beatles. Questions? Call Sarjan at 707/847-3437.