Earth Day falls on Monday this year, but plenty of local businesses, organizations and municipalities plan to celebrate the planetary holiday this weekend.
From Schenectady to Wilton to Delmar, the Capital Region will play host to a variety of family-friendly events celebrating Earth Day. Some emphasize learning with recycling activities and composting demonstrations while other events emphasize the quiet study of frogs and bluebirds. Lots of cleanup activities will be available. One college will host a cardboard construction contest.
Some events will be ongoing, like the state Canal Corporation’s annual Canal Clean Sweep events, which are scheduled along the 524 miles of the state canal system. More than 2,000 volunteers and 155 organizations are expected to participate to prepare the trails and canals for the upcoming tourism season. To find local clean sweep events, visit www.ptny.org/canalway/sweep/.
Check out the following Earth Day events, starting this weekend and lasting throughout next week:
9 a.m. and 1 p.m.: The Wilton Wildlife Preserve & Park is holding two lupine seed planting events today. Planting the seeds of the wild blue lupine at the Old Gick Farm off of Route 50 helps protect the habitat of the endangered Karner blue butterfly and the threatened frosted elfin.
7:30 p.m.: The state Department of Environmental Conservation is sponsoring a Citizen Science event called “FROGWATCH” at the Five Rivers Environmental Education Center in Delmar. An environmental educator will help participants learn more about area frogs and ways to help monitor how they are doing. Through an indoor and outdoor study, participants will also learn to identify species by call.
9 a.m.-noon: A variety of conservation and cleanup activities will be held at Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center at 195 New Karner Road, sponsored by the state DEC.
9 a.m.: The Wilton Wildlife Preserve & Park is holding its final lupine seed planting event at the Old Gick Farm off of Route 50. The Preserve and Park is also hosting a cleanup of the trail at Opdahl Farm off of Ballard Road at this time.
10 a.m.-2 p.m.: Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Schenectady County branch is hosting an Earth Day event at its Sustainable Living Center greenhouses in Schenectady’s Central Park. Community officials will be on hand to educate the public about water conservation, recycling, composting, gardening, and the conservation and preservation of land and wildlife. There will also be garden tours and rain barrel demonstrations. The Master Gardeners will sell vegetable, herb and houseplants and provide soil testing for $5. T.A. Predel & Co. will provide free paper shredding on site, as well. For more information, visit www.cceschenectady.org.
1-5 p.m.: The University at Albany will host an Earth Day Food and Art Festival at Liberty Terrace that will feature live music, local food, arts, crafts and nearly 50 students competing to build a campus replica out of cardboard.
2-3:30 p.m.: The state DEC is sponsoring a Watchable Wildlife event called “Bringing Back the Bluebird” at the Five Rivers Environmental Education Center in Delmar. DEC officials will provide an overview of the conservation challenges facing eastern bluebirds, and guide a search for bluebirds along the center’s bluebird trail.
5 p.m.: UAlbany Biological Sciences Professor Gary Kleppel will host a farm-to-table dinner at his Altamont farm with local dishes representing the various cultures of UAlbany students.
11 a.m.-4 p.m.: The Jewish Community Center will host an Earth Day Festival at the Golub Family Campus, located at 2565 Balltown Road in Niskayuna. In addition to displays and presentations on the environment, green energy, recycling and nature, the festival will include exhibitions on how to improve Earth and its climate by the Environmental Clearinghouse, Ambit Energy, Schenectady ADK Chapter, and the Schenectady County Environmental Advisory Council. Cornell Cooperative Extension will have a soil analysis and Master Gardeners and Composter exhibit. Schenectady County will have a water quality exhibit, and Albany’s Honest Weight Co-op, Albany Vegan Network and Niskayuna Consumers’ Cooperative Inc. will display local and organic items. There will also be a lineup of presentations from noon to 3 p.m. as follows:
Noon: Unveiling of Children’s Art Earth Day Mural
Noon: GE Renewable Energy Programs
1 p.m.: Fox Creek Farms Self Sustainable Community Supported Agriculture Farming
1:30 p.m.: Price Chopper Sustainability Practices
2 p.m.: Dan Gibson: How Energy Efficient Is Your Home?
2:30 p.m.: NYSERDA Energy Programs
3 p.m.: Hudson Solar Home Solar Energy
1-4 p.m.: The University at Albany will host its first annual Family Earth Day, designed to raise awareness of recycling, the atmosphere and environmental science research. Held in collaboration with the National Earth Science Teachers Association, the event is primarily aimed at children and teenagers with activities that demonstrate atmospheric science, cloud viewing, cloud art, bean planting and trash sorting. CBS6 Meteorologist Nick Johnston will serve as guest speaker.
Noon-12:45 p.m.: UAlbany is offering a guided nature walk that will feature Liberty Terrace, the school’s environmentally sustainable student housing complex, and the Purple Path, its walking and jogging trail.
12:30 p.m.: A bird-watching walk will be held at Peebles Island State Park in Waterford.
4 p.m.: The Wilton Wildlife Preserve & Park is hosting an Earth Day scavenger hunt geared toward families at the Fox Trailhead off of Route 50. Participants will help identify sprouting plants and listen for peeping frogs as they walk the trails of the Fox Parcel. Pre-registration is required for this event by Friday.
“Down on the Farm: Issues Facing the Family Farm Today” at 7 p.m. at the Saratoga Public Library. Sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Saratoga County.
Sustainable Saratoga and Skidmore’s Environmental Action Club, a forum on climate disruption, “Stormy Weather: Local Climate Change in the Era of Sandy and Irene,” at 7 p.m. in Davis Auditorium at Skidmore College. Sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Saratoga County.
For more information, call 728-0237 or visit www.lwvsaratoga.org.