10 Earth Day Celebrations That Matter

Earth Day is a day when events are held worldwide to increase awareness and appreciation of the Earth’s natural environment, coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network and celebrated in more than 175 countries. Around the United States, there is probably an Earth Day event close to you. Growing out of the first Earth Day, Earth Day Network works with over 22,000 partners in 192 countries to broaden, diversify and mobilize the environmental movement. More than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year making it the largest civic observance in the world.

Here are some of the more notable celebrations around the United States.

Earth Day on the National Mall

The centerpiece of Earth Day in the United States will be a rally on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Tens of thousands of environmentally conscious people from all walks of life and all parts of the country will be joined by civic leaders and celebrities for this special event to galvanize the environmental movement.

Annual Earth Day Silent Auction
On Earth Day, April 22, 2012, the Northern Virginia Conservation Trust will be holding our annual silent auction with over 40 items from REI, Caribou Coffee, NVRPA and many more contributors.

Battery Recycling
Arizona has a celebration event featuring recycling drop off for old batteries. Do your part and keep batteries out of the landfill by bringing them into one of their locations for recycling.

In Colorado Springs, Colorado recognition of Earth Day gets FREE rides on Mountain Metropolitan Transit fixed-route city buses on Friday, April 20, 2012. Take this opportunity to try out alternative transportation.

Prairie Village Earth Fair

The Prairie Village Kansas Earth Fair will be held at 75th and Mission Road and will feature vendors, demonstrations, new technology and home improvement designed to lead us to a greener world. Local entertainment and food trucks will be on hand to round out the day’s events.

Celebrate Earth Day weekend in Kansas City, Missouri, and help build a greener KC! Choose from a 2.5- or 3.5-mile route along Brush Creek and the Plaza to support Bridging The Gap and environmental education and action programs in Kansas City. Make an even greater difference and join with family, friends and co-workers to form a team!

Clean Up Your Corner is a grassroots event asking everyone around the world to donate one hour of their time on Earth Day 2012 (April 22) cleaning up their area of the world. This can be accomplished through simply picking up and properly disposing of trash on the street or recycling/repurposing tossed items that can be recycled or repurposed.

“AWAKEN your heart, your mind, don’t let it slip by you.” These are lyrics from JES, asking us to step up, pay attention and be the change in the World around us. We have only one Earth, that we all share, “with one moon circling” over us all.

In celebration of Earth Day, Benevolent Media and SCRAP DC present an afternoon of eco-conscious art and design, featuring a pop-up marketplace of local vendors and interactive workshops led by teaching artists dedicated to inspiring “creative reuse” and environmentally sustainable behavior.

Mark your calendar for Alexandria Earth Day 2012! This year’s celebration will be held at Ben Brenman Park (4800 Brenman Park Dr., Alexandria, VA) on Saturday, April 21, 2012, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

There is a lot going on with other cities before and after Earth Day. Still, much remains to be done and “there is still the need for volunteers to come together at least once a year to clean up their communities, usually around Earth Day, bagging trash tossed in parks, along streets and into rivers,” says NorthJersey.com. “Some people haven’t gotten the message.”

[Flickr photo by Cayusa]

Five Things You Can Do On Earth Day To Save Natural Resources

Earth Day is upon us, and even if you’re not planning to celebrate our planet’s making it through another year (what global warming?), there are still some simple measures you can take to show your gratitude. Love your Mother, you know?

Whether you’re on the road or at home, the following are smart rules to implement every day of the year:

  • Do laundry at night, after peak electricity usage hours and only wash full loads.
  • Use a travel mug when you purchase your morning coffee and carry a reusble water bottle.
  • Stash reusable shopping bags in your car, purse or backpack and desk.
  • Turn the tap off while brushing your teeth, washing your face, doing dishes or shaving.
  • Switch to e-tickets, e-pay, and other paperless forms of commerce; add your name to no junk mail and catalog lists.

[Photo credit: Flickr user kevin dooley]

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day?

Today is Earth Day, an annual event that is meant to remind us of how fragile our planet’s natural environment is and the importance of protecting it. All across the globe millions of people are taking part in events designed to celebrate this amazing rock we call home, while simultaneously looking for ways to preserve it for the generations that will follow.

At the heart of this year’s Earth Day celebration is the “Billion Acts of Green” initiative in which organizers of the event have asked participants to pledge to take steps to lead a more “green” lifestyle. Those pledges can include something as simple as taking reusable bags to the grocery store or signing a petition to protect the Amazon, or as big as installing solar panels in your home and buying a hybrid car. The thought is that if we all vow to make small changes in our lives to help the environment, our collective efforts will have a lasting impact on the planet. To make your own pledge to the cause simply click here.

Additionally, a host of Earth Day events are taking place across the world today that will give us the opportunity to have a positive impact on the communities we live in. Those events include things like cooperative efforts to clean up local parks or organized recycling drives. There is even a rally scheduled on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., at 7 p.m. For a complete list of events or to find one in your area, click here.

As travelers, I believe that we understand the importance of protecting the environment as well as anyone. But I also happen to believe that we need to take a more active role in protecting it. After all, we are the ones who are jetting off to visit the far-flung corners of the globe on a regular basis. The next time you take a trip, remember to have a heightened respect for the place you are visiting; take nothing but photographs and leave nothing but footprints. That way those destinations that we love so much will be there for future travelers to enjoy too.

Video: Music From Nature

Consider this the anti-electronic music video. Composed by Diego Stocco and produced by Burt’s Bees, the entire two-minute piece was created using sounds from nature: the shaking of branches, the drumming of coconuts, the pouring of rice. Not only will it surely get your shoulders grooving and toes tapping, it may also inspire a greater appreciation of the world around us. Plug in your good headphones or speakers, and enjoy.

These US Hotels Are Helping Guests Celebrate Earth Day With Eco-Friendly Programming

,Want to travel while also doing something good for the planet? These hotels are offering packages and promotions in honor of Earth Day.

Auberge Resorts
Various U.S. Locations

Auberge Resorts has six properties in the United States, each of which is committed to what CEO Mark Harmon calls “Responsible Luxury.” In honor of Earth Day, each resort is featuring special programming for the month of April. Some of the activities include:

  • Palmetto Bluff (Bluffton, South Carolina) – The property will host a “New Earth Year Resolutions” two-hour nature walk on Monday, April 23.
  • Auberge du Soleil (Napa Valley, California) – Guests can partake in a “Napa Valley Dream Experience” package, part of which includes a visit to the winery and vineyards at Long Meadow Ranch, followed by a three-course winemaker’s menu prepared with local ingredients and a private tour of the organic and biodynamic Quintessa winery.
  • Encantado (Santa Fe, New Mexico) – On Earth Day, Taos Pueblo tribesman Robert Evan Trujillo will lead a special Earth Day blessing and drumming ceremony at 6:00 p.m.

For more information on properties and Earth Day activities, call 866-282-3743 or click here. St. Julien Hotel and Spa
Boulder, Colorado

St. Julien Hotel and Spa is an upscale accommodation immersed in the laid-back beauty of the Rocky Mountains. To help reduce its impact on the environment, the property is working with UHG Consulting to minimize their waste, use eco-friendly products and implement greener practices. During the week of Earth Day, St. Julien Hotel and Spa will be featuring special promotions and programming. Moreover, a portion of the proceeds raised during Earth Week will be donated to the Center for ReSource Conservation. Some of the events include showing a sustainability-themed movie on April 22, and a happy hour benefit on April 28.

Call 720-406-9696 or click here to book.

Terranea Resort
Los Angeles, California

Terranea Resort is an eco-luxury getaway, located on the picturesque Palos Verdes Peninsula. From April 18 to April 22, the property will be hosting an array of green activities to commemorate Earth Day. Clean-ups by kayak, an edible landscaping workshop and tidepooling excursions will be part of the programming as well as:

  • Sea Lion Release and Volunteer Drive – Volunteers will work with the Marine Mammal Care Center rehabilitation and rescue team to help reintroduce sea lions into the wild.
  • Tree and Habitat Restoration – Participants will trek through Terranea’s Discovery Trail with a guide, and assist in restoring indigenous plants.
  • Hawk Walk – The hotel’s ornithologists and falconers will educate guests on the area’s native birds and discuss their environmental contributions.

Call 866-802-8000 or click here to book.

Kimpton Muse Hotel
New York, NY

Kimpton Muse Hotel is a fashionable boutique accommodation located near Manhattan’s theater district. In honor of Earth Day, the property will be hosting an Eco Chic Boutique on April 19, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. During the event, guests can browse eco-friendly stalls while sipping organic cocktails. Some of the vendors that will be in attendance include:

The entrance fee is $15, which includes one signature drink. Proceeds from the event go to benefit the New York Restoration Project.

Call 212-485-2400 or click here to book.

New York, NY

Royalton is a sophisticated property located in midtown Manhattan that introduces elements from all over the world into its design. For instance, while the building’s facade is from France, the wall patterns reflect African tribal art. In observance of Earth Day, the hotel is featuring four special “Earth Day” cocktails from April 16 to April 27. Ingredients for the cocktails will be purchased from the Union Square Farmers Market to help ensure freshness, quality and sustainability. Each drink will be $16, with $2 of the profit going to benefit Grow NYC. Moreover, to give guests something to take home, menus will be printed on seed paper that can be planted to grow herbs and flowers.

Call 212-869-4400 or click here to book.

Red Mountain Resort
Ivins, Utah

Red Mountain Resort is a holistic accommodation focused on relaxation and helping guests to get active in nature. On April 22, the property is offering a 40 percent discount at their spa on their Nature Inspired Treatments. Some of these discounted menu items include the “Four Directions,” which offers a full-body cornmeal tobacco exfoliation and sweet grass herbal wrap, or a body wrap made of Great Salt Lake mineral salts, sesame, avocado, apricot kernal, shea butter and jojoba oil.

Call 877-246-4453 or click here to book.

Turnberry Isle Miami
Miami, Florida

Turnberry Isle Miami is a tropical resort located in North Miami Beach. Being that the property’s design is focused around the continued growth of a 100-year-old banyan tree, it’s no surprise the hotel is going all out for Earth Day. On April 22, Turnberry Isle Miami will be hosting an array of green activities, like a 2.9 mile Earth Day Run that will benefit Operation Green Leaves, a complimentary Chef’s Garden Tour and a night of Glow-in-the-Dark Solar Drop cocktails.

Call 855-201-8027 or click here to book.

JW Marriott Chicago
Chicago, Illinois

The JW Marriott Chicago is a deluxe accommodation in downtown Chicago, located near Millennium Park and the Magnificent Mile. In honor of Earth Day, the property is offering a Midwest Craft Beer & Cheese Flight from April 20 to April 22. Locally crafted beers and cheeses will be paired by Chef Michael Reich in the hotel’s stylish Lobby Lounge. In his culinary and beverage creations, Reich focuses on using high-quality organic ingredients. The beer and cheese flights will cost $12.

Call 800-228-9290 or click here to book.