Earth Day Spotlights Species: Protection Is the Focus of 2019 Campaign
Mar 28, 2019 06:58PM
● By Ronica A. O’Hara
On April 22, eco-conscious citizens will join together again in communities across the country to celebrate Earth Day and work for the planet’s healthy, sustainable future. This year, the Earth Day Network (EDN) is asking people to join its Protect Our Species campaign to raise awareness of the crucial roles that plants and animals play in the ecosystem and the current threats faced by many of them.
The nonprofit cites that the world is facing the greatest rate of extinction in 60 million years because of human activity, including climate change, deforestation, habitat loss, tracking and poaching, unsustainable agriculture, pollution and pesticides. But the good news, EDN says, is that the rate of extinctions can be slowed, and many of our declining, threatened and endangered species can still recover if we work together now. This will necessitate a united global movement of consumers, voters, educators, faith leaders and scientists that demands immediate action.
EDN is asking people to advocate government policies that protect species and their habitats, and to continue to build on the worldwide efforts that embrace the value of nature. It is also asking people to undertake such individual actions as adopting a plant-based diet and stopping pesticide and herbicide use. More information, including teach-in toolkits and facts on threatened species from whales to insects, can be found at EarthDay.org.
Help Natural Awakenings Phoenix & Northern Arizona celebrate and promote progress in species sustainability efforts by participating in these local Earth Day 2019 events.
Earth Day Celebration and Ladybug Release
9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, April 6
Come learn how keeping our community healthy keeps us healthy. Plant seedlings; learn how to build a planter box; listen to music; eat amazing, delicious fruit and veggies; and create art. Release thousands of ladybugs at 10 a.m. Releasing ladybugs is a hands-on experience!
Cost: Free. Location: EarthHeart Park and Community Garden, 625 N. Plaza Dr., Apache Junction. For more information, visit apm.ActiveCommunities.com.
Earth Day and Arbor Day Celebration
9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, April 13
In pursuit of all things green, enjoy a fun-filled morning of live animal presentations, crafts, information booths promoting conversation and sustainable living.
Cost: Free. Location: Environmental Education Center at Veterans Oasis Park, 4050 E. Chandler Heights Rd., Chandler. For more information, call 480-782-2890 or visit ChandlerAZ.gov/earth-day.
Party for the Planet
9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, April 13
Celebrate Earth Day at the Phoenix Zoo with Earth-friendly games and activities designed to inspire and motivate others to care for our natural world. All activities are included with general zoo admission.
Location: 455 N. Galvin Pkwy. For more information, visit PhoenixZoo.org/event-items/earth-day.
Coping with Sloping: Ground Covers and Erosion Control
9:30 to 10:30 a.m., Saturday, April 13
Soften that rock look with these easy-to-grow alternatives to a grass lawn that can take the summer heat. These fast-growing plants stay low and tight with less care. Learn which shrubs, herbs and vines soften all that rock, keep soil from eroding, and stay cool in summer while looking great. A few plants go a long way when you know which plants to use locally.
Cost: Free. Location: Watters Garden Center, 1815 W. Iron Springs Rd., Prescott. For more information, call Ken Davis at 928-445-4159 or visit WattersGardenCenter.com/classes.
Mesa Bike2Work Day: Pancake Breakfast and Earth Day Expo
6 a.m. (check-in), 7 to 9 a.m. (food and expo), Wednesday, April 17
Ride your bike to the Mesa City Plaza to enjoy the festivities. Join the city of Mesa staff as they bike to downtown Mesa to meet up with residents for a pancake and smoothie breakfast where proceeds raised will benefit Roosevelt Elementary. Again, this year will also host an Earth Day Expo during the event to highlight ways residents and employees can go green with different city department offerings.
Cost: Pancakes ($3) and smoothies ($3) or both ($5). Location: East side of the Mesa City Plaza building along the paved walkway. For more information, visit MesaAZ.gov/residents/transportation/bike-pedestrian.
Earth Day Cleanup
8 a.m. to noon, Saturday, April 20
Green Gilbert is hosting a town-wide cleanup.
Location: San Tan Vista Water Treatment Plant, 3695 E. Ocotillo Rd., Gilbert. AllEvents.in/gilbert/green-gilbert-earth-day-clean-up.
Earth Day Celebration at Grand Canyon National Park
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (main event), Saturday, April 20
This year's Earth Day event is in concert with Grand Canyon's National Park's 100th centennial celebration. The theme is Sustainability ... Then and Now. There will be special exhibits portraying the history of transportation, visitation and concessions, along with modern-day efforts to reduce, reuse, recycle and “green our rides.” There will be additional opportunities scheduled in the park the day before the main event for volunteers to participate in litter pick-ups and potential revegetation projects.
Cost: Free. Location: Grand Canyon Visitor Center Plaza, S. Entrance Rd., Grand Canyon Village. For more information, contact Kim Park at 928-638-7329 or [email protected].
Flagstaff Earth Day
11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, April 20
The event will focus on education and outreach that promotes sustainable living and Earth-friendly practices. Join for community cleanup from 9 to 10:30 a.m. There will be food trucks at this event.
Location: Bushmaster Park, 3150 N. Alta Vista Rd. For more information, visit Flagstaff.az.gov/1439/earth-day.
Earth Day Phoenix
10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday, April 22
The ninth annual Earth Day in Phoenix will feature exhibitors, mini eco-classes, and more at this zero-waste event—meaning everything will be recyclable or compostable. Alternative modes of transportation encouraged (light rail/bike).
Cost: Free. Location: Cesar Chavez Plaza, 201 W. Washington St. For more information, visit EarthDayPhoenix.org.
Sedona Earth Day/Arbor Day Celebration
10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, April 27
This family-friendly event will feature games, guided hikes, special presentations, crafts for kids, and environmental education exhibits and activities. Spend the day learning more about our natural environment and enjoying the beauty of our park.
Cost: $4/adult (14+), $2/youth (7-13), free/6 and under. Location: Red Rock State Park, 4050 Red Rock Loop Rd. For more information, visit AZStateParks.com/red-rock/events.
Earth Day at Embracing Your Journey Expo
9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, April 28
Embrace Earth Day with us. Come and explore eco-friendly products and services to help reduce your impact on Mother Earth. Find a large selection of holistic, wellness and metaphysical products and services all under one roof.
Cost: $5 in advance, $8 at the door. Location: Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort, 7677 N. 16th St., Phoenix. For more information, visit EmbracingYourJourneyExpo.com.