Earth Day is a great time for a spring cleanup

(Photo by Lauren Thomas)

(Photo by Lauren Thomas)

New Paltz may have more going on for Earth Day than practically anywhere else. And surrounding towns have been increasingly getting into the act.

In New Paltz, there’s the townwide cleanup, events on campus, lectures, activities, music and even the Earth Day Fair at the Reformed Church on Huguenot Street. The quirky college town has so many events lined up for the next ten days that “Earth Day” has become more like “Earth Week.”

– On Saturday, April 20 from noon till 4 p.m. SUNY New Paltz will hold its environmental awareness and sustainability day, not only a kid-friendly event with games and interactive displays but also featuring a lot of stuff for adults as well. There are lectures about green living – including one from The New York Times’ “Dot Earth” blogger Andrew Revkin and another from Lynne Cherry of “Young Voices for the Planet” – and music. Attendees can also expect to find locally grown green foods and goods, too. E-mail Rosemary Milham at milhamr@newpaltz.edu for information.

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– On Monday, April 22 – Earth Day itself – the SUNY New Paltz Recycling Club will host the Earth Day carnival in front of the Student Union Building on campus, from 4 until 7 p.m. Besides the games, good food and prizes, carnival-goers can learn how to make crafts from recycled materials. E-mail the club for information at newpaltzrecycles@gmail.com.

– Tuesday, April 23 will feature a 7:30 p.m. panel of environmentalists at the SUNY New Paltz Honors Center in College Hall. Speaking during that event will be: Marc Anthony, K.T. Tobin, John McEnrue, Jaklin Levine-Pritzker and Dan Lipson. Professor Brian Obach will moderate the discussion. E-mail Patricia Sullivan for information about the panel at sullivap@newpaltz.edu.

– On Wednesday, April 24 the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG) will hold EarthJam at SUNY New Paltz’s Hasbrouck Quad from 1 to 6 p.m. The event will have music from several student musicians and bands – including Blase and Assortment of Crayons. Later on in the evening, a DJ will spin sweet, sweet techno on the quad during a live art demonstration. E-mail Eric Wood at ewood@nypirg.org for more details.

– On Thursday, April 25, the SUNY New Paltz Students for Sustainable Agriculture will bring homegrown produce and foods to the masses during Farmfest 2013. Complete with lots of food, workshops and local music, Farmfest will run from 10:30 a.m. till 4 p.m. at the Old Main Quad. Get information by e-mailing npsustainableag@gmail.com.

– Arbor Day, on Friday, April 26, will be the occasion for many a tree planting in downtown New Paltz. The village’s Shade Tree Commission is looking for volunteers to help plan hazelnut saplings that day. To get involved, contact Joe Ruotolo at npjruotolo@gmail.com.

– On Saturday morning, April 27 from 8 a.m. until 11 a.m., people who’d like to help pick up litter should head to the basement of St. Joseph’s Church in New Paltz. Those who meet up at the church for the New Paltz Clean Sweep will be fed breakfast and given gloves, trash bags and an assigned area to clean up. It’s an all-ages event, which will continue rain or shine. Can’t make it to the church, but would still like to clean? That’s okay. People who’d like to clean up the rubbish that’s piled up in their own neighborhoods over the winter are strongly encouraged to do so. Register at newpaltz.edu/careers/cleansweep.html or call 255-5636 for more information.

– On Sunday, April 28, the New Paltz Reformed Church on Huguenot Street will hold its annual Earth Day Fair. Celebrating its tenth anniversary, the fair will feature refreshments, fun, demonstrations, displays and children’s activities. Participants can expect live music from several bands. Jim O’Dowd helped organize the Reformed Church’s Earth Day Fair, which has grown since 2003 into a community-wide, all-ages event.