Lifestyle

Earth Day is this Sunday

Reporter staff

Since the first Earth Day in 1970 people have come a long way in understanding the effects humans have on the planet. It’s a time to celebrate gains we’ve made; it’s a time to set new goals in environmental awareness; but most of all, it’s a day to get outside, get involved and do your part.

This year, Earth Day is Sunday, April 22. All week and throughout the weekend, events are taking place on Mercer Island and in every corner of King County to celebrate and promote Earth awareness. Take this opportunity to learn about environmental programs (like recycling, protecting wetlands and habitat, and saving energy), and volunteer to work on a project close to home.

Forest stewardship program

Help restore the Island’s forests, whether you work as a team or individually. You can help removed invasives and plant trees on 300+ acres of open space on Mercer Island. Call 236-2544 to schedule this 1.5-hour training with Paul West, the Park Arborist. He will cover safety, tools and techniques, paperwork and other relevant topics.

Trillium newsletter

Visit www.mercergov.org/trillium and enjoy the Open Space Conservancy Trust Board’s electronic newsletter highlighting recent activities in Pioneer Park. This beautiful 113-acre park on Island Crest Way and 68th Avenue S.E. is a special Mercer Island jewel and beckons everyone to stop and enjoy a stroll along its many paths. Maps are available by stopping at the Parks and Recreation Department in Luther Burbank Park or by calling 236-3545.

MI committee to

Save the Earth

CSE is a group for Mercer Island students, and meets on Tuesdays after school in the library of Mercer Island High School. The group inspires and supports “earth saving” behavior. It operates the Mercer Island Recycling Center at Mercerdale Park as model of service learning. It in invests the center’s profits in environmental action: The Mercer Island School District Recycling and Waste Reduction Program, the cross salmon hatchery, the native garden and other awareness activities.

The group goes on field trips, including hiking and camping. It also joins students from other schools in Earth Service Corps activities.

Motor oil recycling

There is only one place on the Island where you can recycle used motor oil, which is very hazardous to aquatic ecosystems and the environment in general. The City of Mercer Island Shops are located at 9601 S.E. 36th Street. Call for more information 236-3656.

Northwest Natural Yard Days

Beginning April 15 up to 25 percent on natural yard care products such as mulch mowers, bagged compost, bark mulch and water wands as part of the ninth-annual Northwest Natural Yard Days campaign. The partnership between King County, the City of Seattle, the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency and 23 other agency members promotes environmentally friendly yard care by offering discounts on gardening products at 86 participating retail locations throughout the Puget Sound region.

For more information about natural yard care, contact the Natural Lawn and Garden hotline, 633-0224, or info@lawnandgardenhotline.org. King County has a variety of educational materials about natural landscaping available at no cost. The natural landscaping brochures and a full list of participating Northwest Natural Yard Days retailers are available at www.yarddays.com.

Wildlife conservation

Planting trees not your thing? Wildlife conservation is also a large part of helping the environment. Efforts to protect endangered species are now more crucial than ever. Head to www.worldwildlife.org/involved/ to become a part of a global problem-solving network. PAWS, a local animal welfare society, has a lot of volunteer opportunities for Earth Day and beyond, and is always looking for volunteers to help with wildlife outreach on the weekends. Visit www.paws.org/help to see how to get involved with this aspect of Earth Day at a local level.

Events

April 21

Annual spring work party at Wildwood Park from 9 a.m. to noon. Register at paul.west@mercergov.org. 7400 86th Ave. S.E.

Mercer Island High School E team project at Luther wetland from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Register at paul.west@mercergov.org

Community planting day at Mercer Island Boys & Girls Club, for the new children’s garden will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Club is inviting anyone (especially children) who wish to plant, make stepping stones, paint garden fencing, or just lend moral support to come out and help. Starbucks will be providing free coffee. The goal is for the garden to be a hands-on learning experience for kids of all ages. The Boys & Girls Club is also taking donations of good soil, compost, seed and plants, rain barrels and other garden items. Call Sue at 232-4548 ext. 106 with any questions.

April 22

Mercer Island Earth Day Celebration is 1 to 5 p.m. Join EarthCorps, Mercer Island Parks and Recreation and community members as EarthCorps celebrates Earth Day by working to save this Mercer Island Park. Clarke Beach is located on the shores of Lake Washington and it hosts a wide variety of activities such as swimming, hiking and picnicking. The forested area of this park is threatened by the spread of invasive plants such as English ivy. This project is part of a larger effort to restore Mercer Island Parks. This spring the work will focus on installing survival rings around native trees that are covered in English ivy. Other work may include removing other invasive plants and continuing stewardship on previously restored areas. Even working for just a few hours contributes greatly, and because you are working in a local park, you can revisit your work for years to come. Register at www.earthcorps.org. For more information, contact Bill Brosseau at (206) 322-9296, ext. 207 or email bill@earthcorps.org.

Off-Island Events

Today

Environmental Health Lecture Series — Sustainable Systems is 5:30 to 8 p.m. at Town Hall, Seattle. People For Puget Sound is a co-sponsor of these lectures.

Admission is $15. For more information, contact Heather Trim at htrim@pugetsound.org or by calling 382-7007 .

April 21

Earth Day at Carkeek Park, 950 N.W. Carkeek Park Road from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information: Nancy Malmgren, 363-4116

Earth Day at Discovery Park Discovery Park, 3801 W Government Way. From 1 to 4 p.m. For more information: 386-4236 or discoverypark.org

Earth Day at Washington Park Arboretum. Graham Visitor's Center at the Arboretum, 2300 Arboretum Drive E. From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information: 324-4649 ext. 31 or leschenbach@thesca.org

Duwamish Alive! & National Global Youth Service Day at West Duwamish Greenbelt with EarthCorps. Meet at South Seattle Community College parking lot, 6000 16th Ave. S.W. from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information: Chris LaPointe, 322-9296 ext.217, chris@earthcorps.org

April 21-22

IKEA Earth Day Celebration - 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. both days - IKEA Store in Renton - Earth Share of Washington and IKEA will host an environmental fair in celebration of Earth Day 2007. Ten Earth Share organizations will feature sign-ups for volunteer opportunities throughout the spring and summer, interactive exhibits, and fun activities for kids and families. For more information, please contact Dave Manelski at dave@esw.org or by calling 622-9840.

Community Events, April 2014

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