Celebrate Earth Month!

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 30, 2011

03/29/11 by Kacey Hoover

Everyone knows that April showers bring May flowers, but did you know that April also brings some of the year’s most exciting spring festivals? If not, you should know that April is the month for Earth Day celebrations that include music, crafts, recycling, plant swaps and more. It is the time of year where people put away their baggy sweaters and break out their sandals to enjoy some of the year’s best outdoor activities.

If you are interested in participating in this year’s Earth Day Celebrations, then mark your calendar for Viva Verde Earth Fest! It will be held at North Cabarrus Park in Concord on April 16th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This event celebrates living green and invites you to enjoy live music, vendors, food and more.

This is the perfect time to open up your closets and garage to search for old tennis balls, paper to be shredded, photo film, disposable cameras, plastic bags (to exchange for reusable bags), ink & toner cartridges, electronics, cell phones, ALL batteries and compact fluorescent bulbs to recycle for free. I already have a bag ready that is full of old cell phones collected from my family and friends.

After you recycle these items, you may feel a bit empty handed, but have no fear; the book and plant swap is here! If you have a plant that no longer satisfies your green thumb, you can swap it for another that may do the trick. The same goes for books; an old tale can be swapped for a fresh new story. Last year I purchased two beautiful Pineapple Sages that may make an appearance at this event, so keep your eye out!

For the shopper savvy, you can enjoy the sea full of vendors that offer anything from education material to eco-friendly products. Or, to display some of your own eco- friendly products you can register to become a vendor. One of the most popular vendors last year was the Carolina Raptor Center that brought out some of their hawks and owls to showcase.

Not into shopping? No problem! Viva Verde Earth Fest offers a wide range of activities for everyone including geo-caching, nature trail ID walks, live music, food and birds (thanks to the Carolina Raptor Center). So, please bring a chair and blanket to sit back and relax at the park.

Also, Viva Verde gives you the opportunity to show off your creative side, the green one that is. Enter for your chance to win in the Recycled Art Contest or Photo Contest that will be featured at the event. It is free to enter and you’ll have a chance to win cash prizes or a free camera!

Before you leave the event, make sure you have had your gas cap checked and replaced for free. The check is done while you are away from your car and are enjoying the festivities. All you have to do is get a permission slip from one of our volunteers at the parking lot and pop your gas door. You can save $100 a year on gas just by having a properly fitted gas cap, which the Center for the Environment’s Campaign for Clean Air will provide for free if needed! Also, be sure and stop by at the Center for the Environment booth and purchase a raffle ticket to win a Neuton battery-powered lawn mower!

Viva Verde Earth Fest is a must-do event! It is the perfect way to start living green with new information, materials, products and experiences.  I look forward to seeing you there!

Event websites:

    * www.facebook.com/vivaverdeearthfest
    * www.vivaverdeearthfest.wordpress.com




The Center for the Environment at Catawba College was founded in 1996 to provide education and outreach centered on prevalent environmental challenges and to foster community-oriented sustainable solutions that can serve as a model for programs throughout the country.