Spring has sprung. A few unseasonable snow showers aside, Mother Earth has shaken off the frosty grip of winter to usher in a new season of vitality and rebirth. In light of this, it seems only natural Earth Day is right around the corner. As the official day approaches, people around the globe will celebrate the holiday, and there are more than a few events scheduled around the Reno-Tahoe area to allow locals to partake in the festivities as well. Here are a few:
Reno Earth Day will take place at Idlewild Park on Sunday, April 24 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The event covers 20 acres and gives attendees access to a wide variety of environmentally conscious exhibits and events. Food trucks and stages will be set-up offering good eats and entertainment from acoustic music to international dance.
Anastacia Sullivan and Todd Howell were among the volunteers who took over Reno Earth Day in 2012 when the event was nearly cancelled. Their first year, Sullivan was expecting five to six thousand attendees. Ten thousand showed up, and the event has only grown since then, with 25,000 people attending last year.
The event offers five themed areas for people to explore including animals and wildlife, forestry and conservation and international environmentalism.
“You are being educated no matter where you go around this event,” said Sullivan.
In addition to food and music, there is an artist’s grove, a science fair and exhibits on environmental technology. The Humane Society will be offering pet adoptions and United Blood Services will be holding a blood drive. This year’s event even offers an Earth Day spa for those in need of a little earth friendly rest and relaxation.
On April 23 from 8 a.m. to noon, Rancho San Rafael Park’s Wilbur D. May Arboretum and Botanical Garden will host an Earth Day celebration that includes a walking tour where attendees can view birds and wildlife. Visitors can also attend presentations on attracting birds and butterflies into home gardens and even partake in a little Earth Day craft making. Leave Fido at home, though. No pets are allowed in the arboretum.
On April 16, six days before Earth Day officially arrives, celebrate the holiday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Village at Squaw Valley. The event features local music from Joaquin & The Lovelights and The Kitchen Dwellers as well as a “trashion” show put on by Truckee High School featuring students in outfits made from garbage. Enter the raffle and win skis, a bike or Squaw Valley ski passes.
Stephen Addison has run Tahoe Truckee Earth Day for the last six years, and believes a mix of fun and environmental awareness goes hand-in-hand with ski culture.
“It’s about learning how to play on the mountain and about learning to keep our beauty protected, because that is ultimately what attracts all the guests to the mountain,” said Addison. “It’s about educating our guests and having fun at the same time.”
Over 50 exhibitors from the UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center to PETA to the Girl Scouts of the Sierra Nevada will help educate attendees.
Prepare for water adjacent earth friendly fun. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 23, Bijou Community Park in South Lake Tahoe will be the site of South Tahoe Earth Day. Get there early to catch the opening ceremony at 10:30 a.m. Also on deck for attendees will be multiple performances by local musical group The Connor Party. The Bijou Children’s Circus will perform as well.
“They’re a charming circus group made up of elementary school kids,” said South Tahoe Earth Day organizer Jeanne Lear. The group’s performance includes juggling and unicycle riding among other acts.
South Tahoe Earth Day also offers a Kids Zone where children can enjoy recycling themed crafts, face painting, story time and even a bounce house.
The Lake Tahoe Spirit Awards will be presented at the event. The awards are given to individuals who go to extraordinary measures to protect the beauty and clarity of the lake.
In addition to music, awards, bounce houses and children’s circuses, a range of food will be available from local vendors.