WNC clean-air events, programs and resources

Here’s a rundown on local clean-air-related activities happening this month.

Asheville/Buncombe County events

• FR & SA May 10-11, 6-10 p.m. – A 28-hour open-mic Clean Air Vigil and Voters’ Summit on Mountain Air Quality will be held at Pack Square. Speakers, music, poetry, prayers and meditations will support the effort to pass S1078 – the Clean Air Bill. Sponsored by the Canary Coalition. Info: call 4CANARY or visit www.canarycoalition.org.

• SU-SA May 11-18, 2002 Strive Not to Drive Week – A national campaign to increase awareness of air-quality and transportation issues. People of all ages are encouraged to leave the car home for the day (or more) in favor of transportation alternatives such as walking, cycling and mass transit.

The local event is sponsored by the city of Asheville, the Land-of-Sky Regional Council, the Buncombe County Health Center, the Henderson County Partnership for Health, Quality Forward, the Clean Air Campaign, ECO and the state Division of Air Quality.

• WE May 15, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. – Join city and county employees for a stroll along downtown Asheville’s newly completed Urban Trail. City and county staff will lead 30-minute walks starting at 11:30 and 12:30 p.m.; volunteers from the Asheville Area Arts Council will lead hourlong walks beginning at 12 and 1 p.m. All walks leave from Pack Square.

• TH May 16, 4-6 p.m. – A celebration of the completion of the Asheville Urban Trail, including the dedication of the final two stations and a party at the historic S&W Building.

• TH May 16, 7 & 9 p.m. – Bicycle Film Festival at Asheville Pizza & Brewing Co. Meet other cycling enthusiasts and enjoy a free movie (donations will be accepted to support Strive Not to Drive activities).

• FR May 17, 4 p.m. – “Making Transit Work,” a public forum/workshop at the Asheville Civic Center with speakers and panels. Boulder, Colo., Senior Transit Planner Bob Whitson is the featured guest speaker. Organized by the WNC Alliance and co-sponsored by many local and regional organizations. Contact the WNC Alliance for more information (258-8737).

• FR May 17 – Asheville Transit fares are reduced to 25 cents all day. Evening bus service available to the Asheville Mall, UNCA and points in between.

• FR May 17, 5:30 p.m. – Moonlight Over Downtown concert in Pack Square. Golden Spoke Award and other awards and giveaways will be announced at 6:30 p.m.

• FR May 17, 6:20 p.m. – One-hour circuit bike race in the heart of downtown Asheville (starts on College Street). Contact Richard Dunn (242-0582) for more information and to register.

• SA May 18, 9 a.m. – Spring Fling at the N.C. Arboretum, with a 1-mile walk/fun run, plus 5K & 10K runs.

Henderson County events

• SA May 11 – Henderson County kicks off Strive Not to Drive Week on Saturday May 11 with a bike rodeo, community walk, Golden Sneaker Award and many more environmentally friendly events, including a guided 3-mile community walk along the newly completed sidewalk along U.S. 25 toward Flat Rock (11:15 a.m.).

• MO May 13, 7:30 p.m. – Liz Belcher, coordinator of Roanoke Valley Greenways in Virginia presents “Greenways: Creating a Success Story” in the Bo Thomas Auditorium on the Blue Ridge Community College campus.

• TU May 14, 7 p.m. – Video presention at the Henderson County Library, “Where We Live: Are We Loving It To Death?”

• WE May 15, 12:30 p.m. – A discussion of Hendersonville’s Sidewalk Project in the Henderson Country Library auditorium.

• TH May 16, 7 p.m. – “Good Growth Makes Sense,” the last in a series of community meetings on local growth issues, sponsored by the Henderson County Library and ECO. Info: 692-0385.

For more information, call:

Asheville/Buncombe County

Terri March, Buncombe County Health Department (250-5047);
Linda Giltz, Land-of-Sky Regional Council (251-6622);
Jeffrey Burns, city of Asheville (259-5943).

Henderson County

Cathy Hohenstein, Partnership for Health (698-4600);
ECO (692-0385).

Webliography

Clean air

WNC Regional Air Quality Agency – (Local Ozone Forecast & 21 Ways You Can Clean the Air ) – www.wncair.org

Southern Appalachian Mountains Initiative – www.saminet.org

N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources – www.denr.state.nc.us Canary Coalition – www.canarycoalition.org

Land-of-Sky Regional Council (Waste Reduction Partners) www.landofsky.org

Green power

Advanced Energy – www.advancedenergy.org/greenpower

Environmental organizations

Western North Carolina Alliance – www.wnca.org

ECO – www.eco-wnc.org

Faith-based environmental organizations

Interfaith Global Climate Change Campaign – www.webofcreation.org

WNC Alliance’s Sabbath Project – www.wnca.org

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