Attention blackberry lovers: you can find fresh, local, organic blackberries, free, with exercise thrown into the mix. Take a stroll along the waterfront on the west side of downtown, where wild blackberries can be found in pockets here and there. Even better, try the entrance to the State Park, where the juicy nuggets are just beginning to ripen.
You won’t be able to collect them in bulk (sorry, no pies!) but why not kill two birds with one stone and nibble on the delectable fruit while taking a walk along one of Benicia’s most scenic routes? If you are in the State Park, technically known as the Benicia State Recreation Area, go about half way to the end to visit the outstanding, and undervalued, Forrest Deaner Native Plant Plant Society Botanic Garden. Volunteers maintain the garden, and this is the time to appreciate it with the State Park’s closure, slated for next year.
And if you enjoy a few blackberries (leave some for the rest of us please!) along the way, pick high – above "shooting" range of wild and domestic four-legged creatures.