HISTORICAL PARK, REGIONAL TREASURE
Dimond Park is a regional treasure, used by thousands of Oakland residents each week. Visit the park and you will find a diverse population of kids playing, adults picnicking, dogs being walked, people strolling and exercising, and everyone enjoying the natural setting. Dimond Park has a long and rich history in our City. It has been the backdrop for myriad community events, family gatherings and daily excursions for over a hundred years.
Today's a good day to visit - see you there!
History of Dimond Park
Prior to the Spanish land grants of the 1800’s, Ohlone peoples (Huchiun & Jalquin/Irgin tribes of Ohlone Indians) lived in this area & may have fished in Sausal Creek, gathered acorns & hunted in what is now the City of Oakland’s Dimond Park.
In 1820, East Bay lands extending from San Leandro to El Cerrito were granted to Spaniard Luis Maria Peralta. In 1842, Peralta gave part of these lands to his son, Antonio Maria Peralta. In 1867, Hugh Dimond (business man, real estate investor, farmer, (March 27, 1830–January 14, 1896) bought the land that is now Dimond Park & built a home there. In 1917 the City of Oakland purchased 12 acres along Sausal Creek to be used as a park site. See https://localwiki.org/oakland/Hugh_Dimond
Dimond Park was built with grant money from the Works Progress Administration in 1936. The overall layout of the park along the Sausal Creek flood plain was designed then, including the large grassy fields, picnic areas, tennis courts, retaining walls and locations for many of the large trees.
Lions Pool was built in 1929 as a gift from the Oakland Lion's Club to the Children of Oakland. This outdoor pool is well-used by residents from throughout the city and is 35 yards long by 35 feet wide, with 2 lanes marked on the bottom. The pool was renovated in 2019, including improvements for ADA accessibility.
The Scout Hut, originally built as a Boy Scout meeting hut includes a wall of adobe bricks from the Peralta homestead. There's a great history written on the historic plaque adjacent to the bell on the east side of the Scout Hut.
The Dimond Park Recreation Center was built in 1959. Today, the Rec Center hosts summer or holiday camps, after-school activities & preschool classes.
Sausal Creek underwent an extensive restoration project that was completed in 2016.
For further excellent Dimond Park history go to https://fruitvaleoakland.wordpress.com/.../a-short.../
Trees and Plantings
The flower garden at the Fruitvale entrance (sometimes called the "Butterfly Garden") is maintained by volunteers. New plants are added regularly. Seasonal plantings provide color at all times of the year. flowers include foxglove, Peruvian lilies, roses, butterfly bush, calla lilies, matilija poppies.
The Sausal Creek renovation of 2016 created several native plant beds along the creek walk. Plantings include California buckeye, flowering currant, California fuchsia, lupine, Douglas iris, snowberry, bee plant, mugwort & yarrow.
Native Plant Garden
Friends of Sausal Creek has created a California native plant garden with labeled plants along a shaded walk east of the children's playground.
Trees in Dimond Park include samples of the tallest tree in the world (redwood) & the largest (Sequoia giganteum). Several stately Italian stone pines are thought to have been planted about 100 years ago on Lyman hill. Two mature California buckeye trees grow close to the bank of Sausal Creek near Lions Pool. In 2019, Trees for Oakland provided 8 new trees for the park. The Shumard red oak, southern live oak & American elm can be seen in the meadow. Five coast live oaks were planted on Lyman hill. The trees have been adopted by volunteers for dry season watering. See the Tree Map and Key to the Tree Map.