New Marin County festival aims to prepare community for catastrophic wildfires


SAN RAFAEL, Calif. (KGO) — Preventing wildfires is the theme at a festival in the North Bay this Memorial Day Weekend. The Ember Stomp is where many families went for food, music and some expert fire prevention advice which could be a lifesaver this summer.

A band brought some good vibes during a free concert at Marin’s Civic Center Park but music is only part of what’s happening here.

The Ember Stomp festival was a unique way to remind people that fire season is here. There was lots of expert advice on protecting property from wildfire.

“You can add mesh to your gutters as well, keeping debris from gathering, said Elandis Brooks from Fire Farms.

From making your home ember resistant to creating a fire smart yard with defensible space.

“Let’s say from zero to five feet, that’s zone zero, no vegetation,” said Caroline Yong, Master Gardener from the University of California.

“This is one of the most at risk communities in the Nation for wildfire,” said Central Marin Fire Battalion Chief Todd Lando.

RELATED: New assessment tool shows Bay Area counties with highest wildfire risk

A reality check from Chief Lando, he says as drought conditions worsen, the odds of a major wildfire increases by the week.

“This generation has forgotten how at risk we are because we’ve been successful fighting the fires but that luck is going to run out,” Lando said.

Organizers say it’s a wake up for families to be fire safe at home and have a plan in case an evacuation.

“We need an effort from the front lines of the fore to our front doors and that means each of us doing our part to make the community safer,” said Meg McCabe from Fire Safe Marin.

RELATED: PG&E tests AI cameras to spot wildfires in Northern California

The Lang family from San Rafael say it’s important to be prepared.

“With it being so dry, we have not had any rain in a long time, I guess it’s super important to know what to do and what options there are,” said Robin Lang.

Organizers say about 2,000 people attended the one-day festival.

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