There are so many local events scheduled to celebrate Earth Day this year, you might need a wilderness retreat to unwind by the time it’s all over. Here’s a roundup of what our local “green scene” has in store to honor everybody’s favorite blue-green spinning sphere.
• Living the green life: A host of local environmental activists will deliver presentations at Greenlife grocery on Sunday, April 22, beginning at 10 a.m. Representatives from the Mountain Voices Alliance, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, the Canary Coalition and other groups will lecture on topics ranging from green roofs to global warming. For details, visit greenlifegrocery.com.
• Limited resources, unlimited possibilities: Westgate Shopping Center will be buzzing this weekend as Earth Fare and the Center for Unlimited Possibilities team up for Earth Day. From 11 a.m to 8 p.m. on Saturday, April 21, CUP will host a “Pathway of Sustainable Living,” including exhibits by local green organizations, workshops on green living, and speakers.
CUP’s Earth Day Music Fest will take place Sunday, April 22, beginning at 2 p.m., with music by Arundas (of the “obscure mystic world music genre”) and Native American songwriter Gray Hawk, among others. Later that evening, things will get a bit more sophisticated with an eco-fashion show. Meanwhile, next door at Earth Fare, the first 100 customers will receive free, reusable shopping bags.
• I want to ride my bicycle, I want to ride my bike… Even if these lyrics don’t make you eager to start pedaling, there are a number of other ways to get around without cruising solo in your pollution machine: walk, take the bus, break out your Rollerblades or go by Segway. From April 20-29, as part of the annual Strive Not to Drive initiative, you could win a prize for committing to use alternative transportation. Visit gettingaround-wnc.com for details.
On April 20—Strive Not to Drive Day—bus rides in Asheville will cost just a quarter. The campaign will culminate in the Quality Forward event at The Cathedral All Souls (see next entry).
• Onward and upward: Despite a long history of conflict between Christians and Pagans, an event like Quality Forward’s Earth Day at The Cathedral All Souls manages to harmoniously blend reverence for nature with more conventional religious sentiments. During a bicycle race scheduled to begin at noon on April 22, the Rev. Brian Cole, an Episcopal priest, will bless the bikes as they sail by.
Earth Day activities at the commons at All Souls will run from 12:30 to 5 p.m. on the 22nd, including a presentation on tree preservation by Tim Womick of American Forests, a garden-supply and plant sale, a historic walk through Biltmore Village and an organic lunch.
• Getting down and dirty: Warren Wilson College’s Earth Day bash will be a more hands-on affair, with edible-mushroom walks, a workshop on “garbology” (the study of what we throw away), a blacksmithing demo and educational workshops. It all happens Sunday, April 22, from noon till sundown in Warren Wilson College’s formal gardens and pavilion. The day’s musical lineup will include Jar-E, Pierce Edens and the Dirty Work, The Secret B-Sides, The Clay Brothers and a drum circle.
• ECO films and more: Hendersonville’s Environmental and Conservation Organization will host a daylong series of events on Saturday, April 21, at Blue Ridge Community College’s Flat Rock campus. Film showings at Bo Thomas Auditorium will include An Inconvenient Truth at 10 a.m., The Man Who Planted Trees at noon and Kilowatt Ours at 1 p.m. Tim Herd, the author of Survival of the Fittest, will speak at 4 p.m., and a plant sale will run from 1 to 3 p.m. in the campus greenhouses.
• Go on out and get some fresh air: The Brevard College Earth Day Committee has organized a number of events for Saturday, April 21, including environmental education workshops and a swap (“If you bring stuff, you can swap stuff,” according the press release), beginning at noon at the campus amphitheater next to the Porter Center for Performing Arts. Local bands Cletus Baltimore, Intellexual Telapathy, Executive Order and Sol Driven Train will perform from noon until 9 p.m. On Sunday, there will be a hike to Looking Glass Rock. For more information, e-mail email@example.com .
• Who wants to be out of the woods, anyway?: On Friday, April 20, the Southern Appalachian Forest Coalition will present the fourth annual Into the Woods celebration and auction from 6 to 9 p.m. at The Crest Center in Asheville. The fund-raiser will include food, locally brewed beer and organic wines, a silent auction, and bluegrass music by the High Windy Band. Tickets cost $35, and proceeds will benefit the coalition. Call (828) 252-9223 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org .
For still more Earth Day events, check the Seasonal Celebrations section of our Community Calendar.