Earth Day grows into ‘Earth Week’ in Danville

Passport lets participants in multiple events earn potted native plant

The earth is too important for just one day, so organizers of Danville’s Earth Day festival have expanded it to be the Earth Week Festival, to be held April 14-21.

“This is a way to get people to see the good work that is going on in the community,” said Preston Miles with the Clarks Run Environmental Education Corporation.

Miles said, “It would be important for all of us as citizens to contribute and be responsible for our impact on the ecosystem.”

The greatest message from Earth Week is about becoming more aware of the importance of everyone to contribute to the environment, he said.

People don’t always know how to help, said Lindsie Nicholas, watershed coordinator with Bluegrass Greensource, and Earth Week is a way to show people how.

“People are often like, ‘I don’t really know what I can do. I care about the environment, but what can I do?’ I feel like a lot of these workshops … a lot of that’s going to be getting people out there and learning about what they can do,” she said. “Taking small steps to make a big impact when we’re all doing it together.”

Miles said, “Those individual actions are important.”

Nicholas said the idea was to bring together everyone that was doing anything related to Earth Day into one easy format. So they created a “passport,” which includes a schedule of events happening during the week and on Earth Day.

“We’ve tried to pull the community together on everybody that’s doing it and do one source,’” she said.

Passports can be picked up at the events, at the Boyle County Public Library or on the Facebook page of “Clarks Run Environmental Education Corp.”

Activities during the week take place throughout the county and include a wildflower walk and a creek walk at the Central Kentucky Wildlife Refuge, a Clarks Run trail walk, green cleaning, home energy classes and more.

“All of those activities are going to be good,” said Miles. Some, he said, might be hard to schedule independently, but many were things people can do on their own, like visiting the Central Kentucky Wildlife Refuge.

Anyone who visits three or more events during the week and gets their passport stamped can bring it to the Earth Day Festival on April 21. There they will get a free potted plant, which will be a native Kentucky perennial, Miles said.

That event will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 21, at the Bluegrass Community and Technical College on Corporate Drive. Anyone who visits six or more of the vendors’ booths at the one-day event and receives the stamps from those booths will receive free seed packets.

One of the events during the week is the opportunity to be involved in planting a rain garden at the Danville Water Treatment Plant, Miles said.

Nicholas said they wanted to make that a community event.

“They won’t get the whole thing planted, because it’s a big (area),” she said. “It’s an education service — ‘Come in and help us plant some of the plants.’”

Other events during the week include walks on the newly-opened Clarks Run trail, a night sky viewing event and more. Nicholas said they were also trying to get the school groups involved by hosting events for students during the day.

“The school groups have been involved in the past with different projects, Bluegrass Greensource has been in the schools and worked on a project with them and then they brought it to the festival. I think this is the first time we’ve tried to get them out and on a trip,” she said.

Nicholas said they will also be offering mini sessions during the April 21 festival at BCTC on septic solutions and riparian buffer programs, which deal with streamside buffers. Grants are available from Bluegrass Greensource, through the Kentucky Division of Water and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, for homeowners who participate in those classes and live within the Clarks Run and Hanging Fork watersheds, which impact Boyle and Lincoln counties.

The Local Honeys will be performing live music, while Smoky and the Brisket will be set up selling food.

Miles said the Earth Day Festival has been held nine times in 11 years, starting first at Batewood Park, moving to Millennium Park and the Boyle County Fairgrounds before finally landing at the campus of BCTC. He said that worked out well because of the unreliability of Kentucky weather in April.

“What’s nice is BCTC has a nice indoor location. When you get that bad weather, you can go inside. We have been rained-in — not rained-out, but rained-in — a couple of times,” he said.

Miles said the event continues to gain popularity and he was thankful to the community for continued support.

File photo
From left, Sara Lamb and her son, Andrew watch, as Andreah Borguno lets a salamander slither over her hands while her grandfather Brian Borguno watches. The display was presented by Inter County Energy’s Conservation Club House which showed several Kentucky native reptiles and amphibians.
(FILE PHOTO FROM 2017)

SO YOU KNOW

To download and print your own copy of the Earth Week passport, visit https://bit.ly/2qgDqGz. To keep up with the Earth Day Festival updates, visit https://bit.ly/2qhxjBX.

IF YOU GO

Earth Week schedule

Saturday, April 14

10 a.m. Wildflower Walk (Central Kentucky Wildlife Refuge, 600 Carpenter Creek, Parksville)

2 p.m. CKWR Creek Walk

Sunday, April 15

2-4 p.m. Rain Garden Planting (Danville Water Treatment Plant, 387 E. Lexington Ave.)

4 p.m. Clarks Run Trail Walk (Meet at trailhead on Stanford Road)

Monday, April 16

10 a.m. to noon Rain Garden Planting (Danville Water Treatment Plant)

10 a.m. & 6 p.m. Green Cleaning Class (Boyle County Extension Office, 99 Corporate Drive off Lebanon Road)

5:30 p.m. Clarks Run Trail Walk (Meet at Trailhead on Stanford Road)

8:30 p.m. Night Sky Viewing (Meet at 2203 Gose Pike)

Tuesday, April 17

10 a.m. Home Energy Management Class (Extension Office, 99 Corporate Drive)

2-4 p.m. Recycling Center Open House Tour (1862 S. Danville Bypass)

Wednesday, April 18

9 a.m. to noon Water Treatment Plant School Tours (387 E. Lexington Ave.)

4 p.m. Solar Power Demonstration (Wilderness Trace Solar, 70 N. Stewarts Lane)

6 p.m. Household Waste Management Class (Extension Office)

6 p.m. Invasive Species Walk (CKWR)

Thursday, April19

9-12 p.m. Wastewater Treatment Plant School Tours (1970 Stanford Road)

6 p.m. Improving Indoor Air Quality Class (Extension Office, 99 Corporate Drive)

Friday, April 20

9 a.m. to noon Water Treatment Plant School Tours (387 E. Lexington Ave.)

10 a.m. & 6 p.m. Green Living Class (Extension Office)

4 p.m. Best Plants for Butterflies Class (Boyle County Public Library, 307 W. Broadway St.)

Saturday, April 21

8-11 a.m. Main Street Clean Sweep (Meet at Constitution Square)

10 a.m. Rick Serres Bike Ride (Meet at BCTC Campus, 59 Corporate Drive)

11-3 p.m. Earth Day Festival (BCTC Campus)

Noon & 1:30 p.m. Septic Solutions Mini Session (Earth Day Festival, BCTC)

12:30 & 2 p.m. Saving your Streambanks Mini Session (Earth Day Festival, BCTC)

1 & 2:30 p.m. Land Stewardship for Homeowners Mini Session (Earth Day Festival, BCTC)