Earth Day is celebrated every April 22 and according to EarthDay.org “Now is the time for the unstoppable courage to preserve and protect our health, our families, and our livelihoods.” In honor of this important day several county 4-H programs have planned a variety of activities.
On April 23 Monmouth County Parks celebrates the grand opening of the Winter Run Activity Center and 4-H Program Area. 4-H clubs from all over Monmouth County will be on hand to share with the public ways families can participate in 4-H youth development programs. The celebration begins at 1:00 p.m. The center is located along the Manasquan Reservoir at 270 Southard Avenue in Howell. See the website for more information.
Essex County 4-H has invited all youth K-12 to showcase their work and accomplishments—hobbies, schoolwork, or club projects—at the county 4-H Spring Fair, being held in partnership with the Earth Day Celebration at the Essex County Environment Center at 621 Eagle Rock Ave in Roseland on April 23. Projects submitted include indoor gardening, arts and crafts, small animals, writing, technology, photography and environmental education. All projects will be showcased and awarded based on the Danish judging system, with each submission receiving a participation ribbon and judge notes. 4-H and the environmental center will be hosting fun activity and snack stations for the community. Information on Essex County’s Spring Fair/Earth Day Celebration can be found on their website.
Each year, associate county extension department head and 4-H agent Jim Nichnadowicz organizes the providing of shade trees for every county school through the Union County Commissioners’ Arbor Day Tree Program to celebrate Arbor Day and Earth Day. The county buys the trees and Nichnadowicz runs a training session for teachers, PTA parents and students on how to plant and care for the trees. This annual event—designed and implemented by RCE for the purpose of to encourage schools to plant more trees—celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. Training, which occurred at Williams Nursery in Westfield, was held April 5 so that the trees could be planted in time for Arbor Day and Earth Day. 100 trees will be given to both private and public schools in the county.
Every year the Bergen County 4-H Nature Nuts Club participates in Earth Day related activities at the Party for the Planet at Van Saun County Zoo. They will have Bergen County 4-H giveaways and will offer a nature inspired craft. The Party is being held on April 24 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. with free workshops on pollinator gardening and citizen science being held on April 22 and 23.