Earth Day was first observed in 1970. Forty-two years later it’s still going strong and the Earth still needs saving. Here in Eugene and the surrounding area, a lot’s going on to commemorate the occasion. How do you decide what to do? It won’t be easy, but here’s a roundup of some local happenings going on for Earth Day 2012. For more events, see our Calendar.
Saturday, April 21, at EWEB’s Rivers Edge Plaza is the utility’s annual Earth Day extravaganza. Mayor Kitty Piercy will be on hand and speakers will address issues such as sustainability in the region. Inside the EWEB boardroom, attendees will be able to view films and documentaries about the natural world and future challenges to preserving ecosystems. Some 40 booths will be set up ranging from “Ask a Master Gardener” to sustainable landscaping, and there will be a plant sale. See www.earthdayoregon.com/events.html
If you want to get out of town (we suggest taking the bus) then head down to Cottage Grove, paint those animal masks and find that furry costume you wore for Halloween one year, because this year is the fifth annual “All Species Parade” down Main Street in Cottage Grove Saturday. Started in 2008, the event supports animals around the globe by dressing up as them and marching through town. A downtown fair kicks off at noon Saturday at the Grove’s All-America Park. The parade will begin at 2 pm with a dose of dancing.
Nothing says Earth Day for kids like science! On Sunday, the Science Factory will have free admission to the Exhibit Hall and Exploration Dome. There will be earth-friendly activities with exhibit guides and a viewing of “Dynamic Earth.” See www.sciencefactory.org
Also on Sunday from noon to 5 pm is the Whiteaker Bike Fest, an all-out love-fest for everything you can possibly do with a bicycle. Starting at Scobert Park, at 4th and Blair, bike polo is the main event, but there will also be a dance revolving around bicycle partners. Earth-lovin’ tunes are said to be welcome and local musicians will play.
Why stick to Earth Day when you can have Earth Week? LCC is hosting events throughout this week, ranging from a “wellness ecology walk” to a sustainable landscapes talk. There will also be a chance to tour LCC’s “greenest” building on the campus, which uses less energy, less water and is built from eco-friendly material. April 20-22 the school will be hosting a Peace Symposium entitled “People Powered Democracy Confronts Corporate Rule.” See Activist Alert.
Not to be undone, UO is having an Earth Week, too, and this year’s 30 events put on by 20 student groups are under the theme of “Activating Collective Energy.” You’ve already missed Monday’s No Coal Eugene action with a hand-crafted coal train releasing “dust” as it tootled through campus, so don’t miss the rest. For more information visit: http://pages.uoregon.edu/uosc
If you’re in the Corvallis area, don’t miss the Hoo Haa on a student-run organic farm just east of the OSU campus on Sunday, April 22. In its 10th year, the event allows attendees to tour the farm and even participate in tilling soil. It’s sponsored by OSU’s Organic Growers Club. Local musicians will play and Michelle Anderson, a nationally renowned poet, will be giving a reading. For dinner, bring a bowl and silverware because vegetarian chili grown and made on the farm will be provided. For more information visit: http://bit.ly/OSU_AgNews873 A free shuttle will run from the OSU Beaver Store.