by Kristen Bagwell
Did you know that this year marks the 43rd anniversary of Earth Day? From the Earth Day Network:
The first Earth Day, on April 22, 1970, activated 20 million Americans from all walks of life and is widely credited with launching the modern environmental movement. The passage of the landmark Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act and many other groundbreaking environmental laws soon followed. Growing out of the first Earth Day, Earth Day Network (EDN) works with over 22,000 partners in 192 countries to broaden, diversify and mobilize the environmental movement. More than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world.
Earth Day is "officially" Monday April 22, but there are many local activities starting as soon as this weekend! Read on to find out what's going on in your area.
Marbles Kids Museum is part of the North Carolina Science Festival, hosting hands-on activities and events that celebrate science, technology, engineering and math. Experience the fun of science and explore how it impacts our state! Check out the daily activities going on all month long:
Fridays at 10:30am & 2:30pm | Sundays at 2:30pm
Explore electricity, renewable energy and ways to reduce your energy use. From snap circuitry to solar car races and sun-driven crickets, come power up your energy smarts.
Wednesdays at 10:30am & 2:30pm
How does your garden grow? From planting, harvesting and taste testing to diggin in the dirt and exploring nature, join us for fun in the sun!
Tuesdays at 10:30am & 2:30pm | Saturdays at 10:30am
Conduct crazy experiments and off-the-wall investigations. From foam explosions to fizzy rockets, there’s so much science fun to explore.
The town of Chapel Hill will sponsor a Sustainability Center and Solar Stage at the NC Science Festival from 10am - 3pm, UNC Campus. Earth Action Day is a celebration for sustainable living. The Sustainability Center and Solar Stage serves to educate and encourage making environmentally responsible decisions in our lives. The NC Science Festival is an outdoor event featuring a host of interactive activities for all ages, live entertainment, and a great food pavilion featuring local foods. For more information please visit the Town of Chapel Hill website.
Celebrate Earth Day at Meredith College's Wildly Wonderful Earth Day event, featuring author Linda Watson. Linda will present a behind-the-scenes look at how YOU can save the planet, one meal at a time. You'll eat dinner prepared by Meredith College students, watch the world premier of a new Wildly Good Cook video and live cooking demonstration featuring best-selling author Linda Watson, and get tips for creating your own exciting, useful career. Cost is $5 for general public and event starts at 6:30. Get more information here.
In Raleigh, the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences will celebrate the Grand Opening of the Nature Research Center, the new wing of the NC Museum of Natural Sciences. This is an unprecedented 24-hour event beginning at 5pm on April 20 because "nature never sleeps"! From their website:
Visitors will be immersed in interactive science and technology exhibits. They will have the opportunity to try science activities in our investigate labs, explore our research collections in our high-tech Naturalist Center or view the SECU Daily Planet, a state of the art, three story presentation space.
Be sure to check out the online calendar of events!
"Go Green" at Durham’s 2013 Earth Day Festival from 12-5pm at Durham Central Park, 201 Foster Street. This year's theme is Go Green, and the streets surrounding the event will be closed to encourage walking and biking to the event. Festival goers will participate in "green" activities and demos, will learn about many green practices and products at the Sustainability Expo and Earth Art Market, and enjoy great music and food. Click here to learn more about this event, the first of its kind in North Carolina. The Durham Earth Day Festival is presented by Durham Parks and Recreation and Keep Durham Beautiful, Inc.
Spend the day at Harris Lake County Park! Staffers will lead exciting adventures and activities at the lake, in the fields, and through the woods. Explore the ecology and history of North Carolina's Piedmont region, and learn how to grow native plants in your own back yard. Cost is $25 per person; make sure you register! Call 919-387-4342 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
At the Spring Daze Arts & Crafts Festival in Cary, families can enjoy an Earth Day area with exhibits, games, and activities to teach awareness and environmental/resource preservation. The Festival is at Bond Park, 801 High House Road from 9am to 5pm. Visit www.townofcary.org for more information.
What are your favorite local Earth Day celebrations?