(April 19, 2013) Earth Day was started in the United States in 1970 by Wisconsin Sen. Gaylord Nelson to create awareness for the Earth’s environment and to encourage conservation efforts. It is observed on April 22.
In 1990, Earth Day expanded internationally and today more than 500 million people in 175 countries observe Earth Day.
National Arbor Day is celebrated on the last Friday of April. In 2013, Arbor Day in the United States is Friday, April 26. The purpose of National Arbor Day is to plant and take care of trees and to raise awareness of the importance of trees and forests. Arbor Day was founded by journalist Julius Sterling Morton in 1872.
Ocean City Elementary School second-grade classes will present skits, poems, songs and artwork during the resort’s annual Arbor Day celebration on Friday, April 26, at Northside Park on 125th Street, bayside.
For more than 25 years, the Ocean City Beautification Committee has joined with OCES to bring this program to the community.
The celebration will begin with light refreshments at 9:30 a.m. in the Northside Park community room. The presentation of the flags will be conducted by the American Legion Color Guard.
Smokey the Bear, the United States Forest Service mascot, and Elroy the Elk, a character created for the Elks National Drug Awareness Program to spread the anti-drug message “Say NO to drugs!” are scheduled to make an appearance.
Depending on the weather, the festivities will move outdoors where the students will take the stage.
Also during the celebration, Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan and City Council members will be presented with two awards.
The first is the National Arbor Day Foundation’s “Tree City USA” award, which the town has received for the past 25 years.
“We were the first first barrier island in the country to receive the Tree City USA award,” said Donna Greenwood, chairwoman of the Ocean City Beautification Committee.
The second honor that will be presented is the Maryland Community Forest and the Department of Natural Re-
sources, Forest Service’s Maryland P.L.A.N.T. (People Loving and Nurturing Trees) Community Award, which Ocean City has received since the program’s inception 21 years ago.
Students will also assist the mayor and council members in planting a tree at Northside Park as part of the Beautification Committee’s TreeMendous Program.
“One of the purposes of doing this is to beautify the town,” Greenwood said. At least 20 trees have been planted at Northside Park since the event’s inception, Greenwood said. “It’s also to introduce young children to the idea of planting trees because of the benefits they bring to us.”
Following the tree planting will be demonstrations by the Ocean City Police Department’s mounted police and K-9 units.
All residents and visitors are invited to attend. For more information, call Greenwood at 410-289-7060.
Take Pride in Berlin Week 2013 starts Saturday with the town’s annual Clean-Up Day, scheduled from 8:30 a.m. to noon. Sponsored by the Berlin Parks Commission and Grow Berlin Green, volunteers will gather to spruce up town parks and the downtown and nature areas.
In addition to individuals, volunteer teams are also being sought. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. in both Stephen Decatur Park and Henry Park.
Following the cleanup, lunch will be provided by Berlin Area Ministries United.
Those who cannot attend but still wish to help can make monetary donations to offset the costs of supplies or tools and supplies for the cleanup. Residents are encouraged to do their own spring-cleaning of their properties.
For more information or to pre-register for the cleanup, contact Mary Bohlen at 410-641-4314 or mbohlen@berlinmd.
gov, visit www.signupgenius.com/go/
805084FA5AA2EA57-cleanup; or search “Take Pride in Berlin Week” on Facebook.
The Salisbury Zoo will have its annual Earth Day Celebration on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The festivities will begin with the annual Zoo Stampede 5k run/walk, sponsored by Vernon Powell Shoes. Registration cost is $18 in advance; $20 on race day. Runners can pre-register by visiting Vernon Powell Shoes in Salisbury or at www.salisburyzoo.org.
Runners can also register at the zoo the morning of the race starting at 7:30 a.m. Free T-shirts will be given to the first 150 registered runners. Awards will be presented to the overall winners and top finishers in each age category.
The Earth Day Celebration is a free event for the family. The celebration aims to promote a reverence for wildlife and to raise awareness for the environment. Scheduled activities include zookeeper talks and demonstrations, games, environmental activities, face-painting and food. More than 20 Earth-friendly exhibitors will be on hand, including representatives of Blackwater Wildlife Refuge, Ward Museum, Delmarva Discovery Center and the National Aquarium.
For more information, call Mary Seemann at the Salisbury Zoo, 410-860-6880, Ext. 8 e-mail mseemann@ci.
FENWICK ISLAND, DEL.:
Coastal Kayak on Route 1 in Fenwick Island has organized a wetland cleanup on Sunday in honor of Earth Day, from 3-5 p.m.
“The in-land bays and surrounding wetlands are amazing resources,” Coastal Kayak owner and manager Jen Adams-Mitchell said in a press release. “Earth Day is a great reason to get outside and get up close and personal with the salt marshes that provide so much for our coastal environment.”
Volunteers on land and water are needed, with or without kayaking experience. Those interested in the cleanup should meet at Savages Ditch Road on Rehoboth Bay, off Coastal Highway, just north of the Indian River Inlet.
Volunteers may take their own kayaks or canoes, or register to borrow a kayak at no charge. Free refreshments and trash bags will be provided, but volunteers should be prepared to pay a Delaware State Park parking fee of $8. For more information, visit www.coastal
kayak.com. To register, e-mail info@
coastalkayak.com or call 302-539-7999.