Bingo, cleanups and restoration projects
Earth Day is about getting outdoors and engaging in spring cleanups, river restorations and tree plantings, but this year with the pandemic, some agencies are taking their events indoors.
Landing on April 20, Earth Day started in 1970 to launch a worldwide environmental movement that addresses everything from climate change to species loss, natural disasters and environmental degradation. The theme of this year’s movement, Restore Our Earth back to a healthy state, will focus on those communities disproportionately affected by environmental issues. The sponsoring organization, Earthday.org, is the world’s largest recruiter to the movement and works with more than 75,000 partners in 190 countries.
Here at home, agencies in Fort Collins, Greeley and Larimer County are offering contactless and in-person events to help celebrate Earth Day.
The Sustainable Living Association, a Fort Collins-based nonprofit promoting a sustainable lifestyle through educational programs and events, will host the 11th annual Earth Day Fort Collins, a Virtual Earth Day Celebration April 22-24 to help local residents stay connected to the earth.
The association, in partnership with the city of Fort Collins, will present three days of virtual speakers, educational videos, activities to do at home, live streaming of music, and tips and resources focused on sustainable living. There will be more than 100 educational and awareness activities centered on conserving natural resources, protecting and preserving the environment, and leaving less of an impact on the earth.
“It’s a way for people to celebrate Earth Day at home,” says Kellie Falbo, executive director of the Sustainable Living Association. “It’s more important than ever to celebrate our natural environment considering how much we are all needing that connection with nature right now.”
The celebration will include the 2nd annual Earth Day ShiftFoCo Challenge, which aims for a 1,500-household participation to reduce CO2 output by 1,000 tons through April 22. Fort Collins residents who compete in the challenge can do simple, everyday things to reduce their impact, while also saving money. They simply need to create a profile and enter information on their current activities and browse a list of sustainable actions to add to their dashboards.
Last year, 564 households signed up and reduced their CO2 emissions by 447 tons, which is the equivalent of taking 87 cars off the road for one year.
For more details about the Sustainable Living Association’s Earth Day events, visit https://sustainablelivingassociation.org/events/earth-day-fort-collins/.
The city of Greeley will host several events in April to celebrate Earth Day and support the environment and sustainable living.
The events will include a winter farmers’ market April 6 and April 20 at Zoe’s Café & Events, 715 10th St., plus lectures, restoration projects and spring clean-ups. The featured events are:
- April 17: Fruit Trees in Colorado Landscape Lecture, 6-7:30pm, City Center South, City Council Chambers, 1001 11th Ave. Amy Lentz, CSU Extension agent for Horticulture in Weld County, will talk about the science behind caring for fruit trees and cover things like site selection, cold hardiness, harvesting, diseases and insects for tree fruits.
- April 20: The Poudre River Trail-Athlon, 9am-noon, Poudre Learning Center, 8313 W. F St. There will be 10 outdoor activities from which to choose, such as a fun run, a bike ride along the Poudre River, a nature walk, bird watching and a scavenger hunt. There also will be booths, music, refreshments and prizes.
- April 27: Signature Bluffs Natural Area Trail and River Restoration Volunteer Project, 8am-4pm, Signature Bluff Natural Area, 629 N. 71st Ave.; Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, 10am-2pm, Greeley Police Headquarters, 2875 W. 10th St.
- May 4: Greeley Green Gardening Fair (compost bin and rain barrel sale), 9am-noon, Greeley Xeriscape Garden, 2503 Reservoir Road; Volunteer Tree Planting, 9am-2pm, along the newly constructed trail at the Mountain Vista Natural Area, 20th Street and 74th Avenue.
The Greeley Forestry Arbor Day Celebration on April 20 was cancelled in response to the pandemic. The Spring Clean-up Weekend originally planned for April 26-27 was moved to Oct. 2-3.
Earth Day participants also are encouraged to take the Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation by pledging to save water, protect water quality and conserve energy. To sign up and enter a chance for prizes, go to mywaterpledge.com.
Bingo is a great way to learn a few eco-tips without having to go outside. Larimer County will offer the second annual Celebrate Earth Day 2021 with a Bingo contest for its residents with entries accepted starting April 20.
To participate, county residents can download a bingo card and cross off each eco-tip they put into practice to enter into a drawing for a county parks pass. They can receive one entry for crossing off a row, column or diagonal, and if they complete the card, they can be entered twice. For a third entry, they can take selfie photos of their green actions.
“We want people to rethink their shopping and disposal habits by reducing and reusing things and finally recycling what they have to discard,” says Gloria Cohen, environmental educator for Larimer County Solid Waste. “It’s a way to bring awareness to Earth Day and to encourage participants to participate in having a safe and healthy community.”
Participants are asked to send in their bingo cards by May 7 to email@example.com. The winner will be drawn on May 10.
Larimer County Solid Waste is offering two additional Earth Day contests.
The first is the 21-Day Reuse Challenge for grades K-12. There will be a challenge each day April 1-21 where participants are encouraged to reuse and upcycle their trash to create the craft for the day. They will need to take a selfie photo of the completed daily challenges and send them to firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to receive a robot kit. For details, visit larimer.org/reusechallenges.
The second contest is a Public Service Announcement for grades K-12, Dear Planet Earth-PSA Video Contest. Participants are asked to develop a 30- to 60-second video or radio spot that addresses the issue of excess waste and to inspire the community action to address this issue.
“This is to raise awareness about caring for the planet and improving the quality of life in Larimer County,” Cohen says.
The deadline for entries is April 20, and the winner will receive a $150 Visa debit card and have the video showcased in May through the Larimer County Solid Waste’s website and social media accounts. For details, visit larimer.org/dearplanetearth.