SANDPOINT — Nearing 50 years since its inception, Earth Day is now celebrated across the world, with a focus on bringing awareness to the environment.
Each year, since 1970, Earth Day is celebrated on April 22. Some people get together for environmental campaigns, such as cleaning trails and stretches of highways, while others may simply plant a flower or a tree to add to the beauty of nature.
Perhaps the excess of April rain has scared people off from planning large Earth Day events in the area, but there are a few scheduled. The events are not all on Saturday, though. The People's Climate March, which is promoted as an "extension of Earth Day celebrations," according to a press release by 350 Sandpoint, is a week later on April 29.
Across the country, people will gather to demonstrate the concerns for purity of water, air the health of the Earth, and the "social and economic issues presented by the changing climate," the statement says.
Local participants will gather at 1 p.m. at Farmin Park in Sandpoint. Following some brief presentations, marchers will make their way through downtown to Community Hall on First Avenue. Action tables and information about local groups working on issues of social, economic and climate justice will be available at Community Hall, as well as creative, Earth Day-style activities for kids and adults. Participants are encouraged to bring signs expressing their passion for Mother Earth.
The event is sponsored by 350 Sandpoint and the Idaho Conservation League. It is also supported by local chapters of the Citizen's Climate Lobby, Sandpoint Human Rights Task Force, Sandpoint Indivisible, Wild Idaho Tide Rising, Lake Pend Oreille Waterkeeper, as well as others.
A few Earth Day-related events are happening this weekend in Clark Fork, including a film at the Clark Fork library at 3 p.m. today, titled "Love Thy Nature."
Kathleen St. Claire-McGee with the American Heritage Wildlife Foundation in Clark Fork sent the press release from film director Sylvie Rokab, who said the film invites viewers to "fall in love with nature."
"My wish is that they come to realize that a deeper connection with the natural world won't just ignite a desire to protect is, but ultimately allow them to experience a new level of meaning, connection and fulfillment in their own lives," Rokab wrote about the 2014 film.
Narrated by Liam Neeson, Love Thy Nature is a cinematic journey through the beauty and intimacy of the human relationship with the natural world, Rokab said in the statement.
The Clark Fork library is located at 601 Main St. Information: 208-266-1321.
The following morning, on Earth Day, the AHWF is hosting a cleanup on Highway 200. St. Claire-McGee said AHWF adopted the stretch of highway 10 years ago between mileposts 57-59. As part of the agreement with the Idaho Transportation Department, the group, along with community volunteers, clean the section twice a year.
Volunteers for the highway cleanup should be at the AWHF facility, 59895 Highway 200, at 9 a.m. dressed in comfortable shoes. Volunteers can bring their own gloves if desired and AWHF will provide safety vests and trash bags.
Also in Clark Fork on Earth Day, the library is hosting a mushroom lecture at 2 p.m.
Tim Gerlitz, long-time member and educator at the North Idaho Mycological Association, will present a slide show highlighting spring mushrooms found in North Idaho. His presentation will include information about identification strategies, local poisonous and deadly poisonous species, and he will share information about ethical mushroom collection and stewardship of the local forests.
An event Saturday evening will celebrate Earth Day through music with Neighbor John Kelley and his band at Di Luna's Cafe in Sandpoint. Proceeds from the event will aid the Friends of the Pend d'Oreille Bay Trail in their efforts to expand the trail into Ponderay. It will also help fund improvements to the trail, including interpretive signage, and overall stewardship of the trail.
Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the concert begins at 7:30. Tickets are available for $13 in advance at Di Luna's or at the door. Di Luna's is located at 207 Cedar Street.
Mary Malone can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her on Twitter @MaryDailyBee.