Spandy Andy at Celebrate Earth Day 2019. (Ridge Meadows Recycling Society/Special to The News)

Spandy Andy at Celebrate Earth Day 2019. (Ridge Meadows Recycling Society/Special to The News)

Earth Day celebrations to return to Memorial Peace Park this April

Celebrations to include Family Freecycle, music stages, food trucks and even a flash mob

Ridge Meadows Recycling Society will be hosting this year’s Earth Day celebrations in April at the Memorial Peace Park.

The society’s Leanne Koehn expressed her happiness in being able to bring back many of the usual popular activities after a two-year long hiatus in in-person celebrations.

“The Celebrate Earth Day Planning Committee is very excited to be working together again, even though our meetings have all been over Zoom! This team has been working together for a long time now, we came together to celebrate Ridge Meadows Recycling Society’s 40th Anniversary in 2012, and we are now celebrating RMRS’s 50th Anniversary” she said.

The Earth Day celebrations will be held on April 23, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with the theme, “Pathways to a Better Normal”.

“Over the years, our themes have included ‘Food for Thought’, ‘Back to Nature’, and ‘Make it, Grow it, Fix it, Share it’. This year’s theme is designed to encourage people to take small, simple steps toward the world they want to create. We will explore pathways and invite people to journey with us into water & energy conservation, transportation, the outdoors, and community. See what idea jumps out at you as something you can fit into your life. Do one thing, then do another,” said Koehn.

Some of the activities at the park would include a Family Freecycle, where donations of gently used books, toys, and clothing will be collected for two weeks ahead of the event, including at a drop-off event the night before Earth Day, on April 22, from 5 to 7 p.m. in front of the ACT Arts Centre. All items collected will be sorted into sizes and categories, set out on tables, and given away at the Earth Day event.

”We live in an abundant society – most people have too much “stuff” and are more than happy to give it away. De-clutter your home then come to Earth Day and find something new to you!” Koehn said.

She also said that around 20 vendors will put together a market before the regular Farmers Market season begins, there would be an electric vehicle display, repair cafe, Tinkerbell station for kids to get into repair-mode, a cycle recycle free bike draw by the local HUB cycling group, some DIY-time with artists from the art studio tour, music stages and food trucks.

“We are also excited to welcome back Spandy Andy as a roving performer who gets everyone up & dancing – even in the rain! New this year, the Ridge Meadows Multicultural Society will be organizing a Nature Mandala Maze, and keep your eyes open for the Veil Dance Flash Mob,” she said.

Registrations are now open for participants, performers, and volunteers. Online forms are on the society’s website at www.mrearthday.ca and they also have a volunteer page with a video about what to expect at: https://rmrecycling.org/earth-day-volunteer-page.

”Sometimes the array of choices or lack of direction can be overwhelming, and many people have struggled through the isolation and mental stress of being in a pandemic for an extended period of time. At times we all need connection, direction, and guidance. Our goal is to help people see the path forward, the way to positive change, one small step at a time,” said Koehn.

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There is also the Poetry & More and Photo contest and more info on this can be found at https://rmrecycling.org/earth-day-poetry-photo-contests.

“Re-connecting with the planning team has reminded me how much we need community connections. We are not meant to live in isolation. The team inspires me and re-invigorates my energy every time we meet,” said Koehn. “We can feel how important it is to do everything we can to make Celebrate Earth Day a safe, in-person event to start bringing the community back together as things start to open up.”

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