Healing in Nature


Heal in Nature with Green Foothills

Healing in Nature outings bring people together for meditative, healing experiences as we explore protected parks and open spaces. These gatherings are curated for people of all ages, abilities, and interests, by trained docents and community healers. Our hope is that these restorative experiences will connect you more deeply with your community, all living beings, and mother earth.

While not required, if you are not already a Green Foothills donor, we ask that you make a tax-deductible contribution to help make these outings and all the work we do for local nature possible.

Upcoming Events

These events are free and open to the public. Advance registration is required. Questions? Contact [email protected].

Picchetti Ranch
Picchetti Ranch Open Space Preserve
Sunday, February 26, 2023
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Join us at Picchetti Ranch Open Space Preserve for a ~1.5 mile walk, where you will experience a restorative meditation and unifying activities curated by our local healers as well as a rewarding docent-led hike where you will learn about native animals and plants. The beauty you’ll experience will remind us all why Green Foothills works so hard to protect our region. After the hike, you’ll have the option to enjoy local wine at Picchetti Winery (located directly adjacent to the parking lot) on your own.

Register here.


Laguna Seca in Coyote Valley
Laguna Seca
Saturday, March 18, 2023
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Local healers will lead you through a restorative meditation curated for you and the Earth at Laguna Seca, located in the North Coyote Valley Conservation Area. Afterward, we’ll explore this seasonal wetland on an easy walk guided by our docents. Learn about the natural and cultural history of the North Coyote Valley Conservation Area and hopefully experience some Spring bird migration.

Register here.


Harbor Seals at Bair Island. Photo by Judy Irving, Pelican Media.
Bair Island
Friday, April 14, 2023
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Explore Bair Island, the largest island in the South Bay, located in the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Learn why it’s such a hotspot for bird and marine wildlife, and participate in a restorative meditation with local healers.

Register here.


Pillar Point Bluff
Pillar Point Bluff
Saturday, May 20, 2023
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

This will be our first time hosting a Healing in Nature event on the coast! We’ll begin with a restorative meditation on the beach with local healers. Then we’ll explore the Jean Lauer Trail that wanders the windswept heights of Pillar Point Bluff, guided by a docent.

Register here.

Check back for more events later this year!


Meet Your Healers

Smita headshot

Smita Garg
Healing in Nature Series Healer, Dr., Soul Regression Therapist, Meditation Expert, Artist-Educator, City of San Jose Arts Commission Chair, Green Foothills Leadership Program 2016 Graduate

Smita Garg, Ed. D., is a meditation expert and the founder of Kinder Way Healing. She has guided meditations for groups and organizations including Green Foothills, Chopsticks Alley, Fil-Am Chamber of Commerce Silicon Valley, Parents Helping Parents, and San Jose city departments. She has received training and certifications from world-renowned Dr. Brian Weiss and Dr. Linda Backman in Soul Regression therapy, and has practiced the Sahaj Samadhi Meditation style for years. Through the course of her own deepening meditation practice, she has created her own style. Smita is a mother of two girls, an artist-educator, a lifelong community activist, and an involved member of San Jose’s arts community.

Amari headshot

Amari Thomas
Healing in Nature Series Healer, Advanced Soul Coaching Practitioner, Executive Coach, Advisory Committee member for Green Foothills, and Board Member for several nonprofits

Amari Thomas is a Certified Advanced Soul Coaching Practitioner, one of a select group of people worldwide personally trained by internationally known healer, teacher, and author Denise Linn. Amari is the founder of Wisdom Revealed, a spirit-based personal discovery and coaching/training organization focusing on inspiring and supporting everyone to live their most authentic life. She is a member of the Mapuche indigenous tribe of Chile and comes from a lineage of Earth Healers. Being in nature is one of the most powerful transformational experiences there is and Amari is excited to introduce others to the reciprocal healing power of Nature.

Meet Your Docents

Catherine C.

Catherine Crawford-Swent has been leading hikes with Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District since 2018. As a registered nurse Catherine has a passion for health and wellness. She has a strong belief that our interconnectedness with nature has healing benefits for us as individuals and for the planet as a whole. In addition, she believes that as we begin to understand our natural world, we begin to understand ourselves. As a docent she considers herself a generalist, but she has a particular interest in trees, ferns, lichen, aromatic plants, and wildflowers.

Craige E. headshot

Craige Edgerton started leading hikes in 1985 with the Santa Cruz Natural History Association. He is passionate about leading people into nature and telling stories that are both educational and entertaining. Craig currently leads hikes and outings with the Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society, the Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority, The Land Trust of Santa Clara Valley, and of course, Green Foothills. In addition, he volunteers with many other community organizations through his 39-year membership with the West San Jose Kiwanis Club, currently serving as President.

Nancy Federspiel

Nancy Federspiel grew up in Ohio and her interest in nature and the outdoors started at a very young age, as she has enjoyed hiking, camping, canoeing and river rafting, backpacking, and other great adventures over the years. She moved to the Bay Area in 1980 and loves to run and hike the trails of our beautiful open spaces in the Peninsula and Coastside. She has been on Volunteer Trail Patrol for the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District since 2018 and has recently participated in docent training with the Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority. Nancy is excited to participate in Green Foothills’ Outings Program and is looking forward to sharing the wonderful natural environments that Green Foothills has helped to preserve.

Michael H. headshot

Michael Hawk is an OSA Docent, certified California Naturalist, a field trip leader for Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society (SCVAS), and a board member for SCVAS. He also leads groups for BioBlitz events. Michael has an interview-based nature podcast and is starting a new conservation organization. He took a few ecology courses in college, but his professional expertise/education is electrical engineering and computer science. Michael most recently worked at Google, but left in May to pursue nature conservation full time.

Dan Q. headshot

Dan Quinn grew up in San Jose and has a PhD in Physics from Stanford. He has lived in Portola Valley since 1977, and has long enjoyed hiking and camping in the Bay Area and the Sierras with family and friends. As his career progressed from academic high-energy physics, through decision analysis, to financial engineering and risk management, he maintained his interest in the environment; retired, he now has more time to focus on the legacy we will leave future generations. Dan has served on the boards of Hidden Villa and Acterra, as a guide with Hidden Villa’s Environmental Education Program, and as a Jasper Ridge docent. He has supported Green Foothills for years. An avid photographer, he contributes his nature photographs to several conservation organizations. His photographs are at CaptureTheLight.Zenfolio.com. Dan is awed by the legacy of Green Foothills and wants to help advance its mission in the future.

Interested in becoming a Green Foothills docent? Email [email protected].


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