Earth Day calendar 2011
A directory of Birmingham Earth Day activities
by Weekly Staff
APRIL 21 & 22 “Earth Day at Samford.” Samford University, 800 Lakeshore Drive, Homewood. Activities include films, convocations and the “Renewing the Earth” fair featuring student and faculty exhibits related to the environment. For the schedule, visit www.samford.edu/earthday/schedule.html.
APRIL 21-23 “Party for the Planet.” Birmingham Zoo, 2630 Cahaba Road. You are invited to join the throngs expected for this annual Earth Day celebration, presented by the Birmingham Zoo and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. The event will be held April 21 & 22, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., and April 23, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Environmental groups will have information booths set up around the Zoo. The event will include wildlife shows, face-painting, cell phone recycling and conservation-related crafts and activities. For more information, visit www.birminghamzoo.com.
APRIL 22 Free Emissions Testing. Vulcan Park, 1701 Valley View Drive. The Alabama Partners for Clean Air (APCA) will host this event, allowing drivers to determine if their cars need repairs to reduce emissions. Some drivers may receive vouchers to help with qualified repairs. The APCA is a group of public, private and non-profit organizations working to implement voluntary strategies that improve air quality in Jefferson and Shelby counties. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. For more, including information regarding vehicles that may not qualify for vouchers, visit www.alabamacleanair.org.
APRIL 22 Earth Day at Recycle USA. 6147 Sunrise Drive, Pinson. This commercial recycler will celebrate Earth Day with lunch and prizes. According to its web site, the company pays for recycled beverage cans. For information, call (205) 680-4589 or visit www.recycleusainc.com.
APRIL 23 Earth Day Celebration & Trail Running Festival. Ruffner Mountain Nature Center, 1214 81st St. South. The all-day, familyfriendly event at Ruffner will feature a variety of races and distances. There will be games, activities It was U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson from Wisconsin who started Earth Day when he called for an environmental “teach-in” to be held around the country on April 22, 1970.
According to Wikipedia, Nelson’s idea was modeled after the anti-Vietnam War teach-ins of that turbulent time and designed to increase public awareness of what the politician and eco-activist perceived as widespread environmental degradation. More than 20 million people participated that first year, Wikipedia says, and Earth Day is now observed on April 22 each year by more than 500 million people and several goverments in 175 countries. In 2009, the United Nations designated April 22 International Mother Earth Day.
There are lots of cool eco-activities planned around the Magic City throughout the Earth Day weekend and beyond. Get out and take advantage of them and learn new ways that you can help the flawed, often pathetic human race clean up its act and, perhaps, begin to live in greater harmony with nature in this new century. Do it for your kids. Do it for yourself. Do it mostly because it’s springtime, and the weather’s too nice for you to lie around the house or sit in front of that massive TV with a game control in your hand. Get out there and do something green, damn it! and crafts. Results of races will be posted locally and in several running-themed publications or web sites. For information and registration, go to www.ruffnermountain.org.
APRIL 28 Green Tie Affair. Good People Brewery, 114 14th St. South. This annual fundraiser for the Alabama Environmental Council will feature food; music from the Birmingham group Menewa; and silent and live auctions with such items as art, jewelry, vacation packages and event tickets. The event will feature the unveiling of the Recycle Alabama campaign. According to the AEC web site, the group is part of an effort to implement an Alabama Department of Environmental Management Recycling Fund grant awarded to the Jefferson County Department of Health. This grant provides $276,338 to increase recycling in Jefferson County. According to the site, the Recycle Alabama campaign will include the continued operation of the Downtown Birmingham Recycling Center, as well as an effort to show residents of the Birmingham area that recycling can benefit the entire region and that individual actions can have a large, positive environmental impact. 6:30 p.m. Ticket are $50. Beer, wine and heavy hors d’oeuvres are included with ticket purchase before April 22. To learn more about the event or the AEC, go to www.aeconline.org/ greentieaffair.
MAY 1 “Earth Day at the Gardens.” Birmingham Botanical Gardens, 2612 Lane Park Road. This event at the Gardens offers educational activities for children and families. The day will include hands-on interactive games and activities. Learn what makes native plants important to the environment, how to protect plant pollinators, why sustainable gardening matters and how outdoor activities can improve quality of life. 1-5 p.m. For details, call (205) 414-3900 or visit www.bbgardens.org. To learn more about opportunities to volunteer at the event, contact Mary-Bestor Grant at (205) 414.3962 or email@example.com. Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org