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Earth Day 2013 Activities

Apr. 17, 2013
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Thursday, April 18


Celebrate Earth Day Early with Midwest Environmental Advocates

Join the Midwest Environmental Advocates on Thursday, April 18, for a meeting at the Clock Shadow Creamery at 5:00 p.m. At 5:30 p.m., Cedar Grove’s Master Cheesemaker Bob Wills will lead a building tour of the LEED-certified building that is the home of cheesemakers, nonprofits and a community center in the heart of downtown Milwaukee’s historic Walker’s Point. A wine and cheese reception will follow. The event is free and donations will support the Midwest Environmental Advocates. RSVP here or contact Stacy at sharbaugh@midwestadvocates.org or 608-251-5047 ext. 1. Street parking is limited; bus and bikes are encouraged.



Friday, April 19


Office of Environmental Sustainability and Rock the Green’s “Milwaukee's Earth Day Celebration”

Participate in the Office of Environmental Sustainability and Rock the Green’s second annual “Milwaukee’s Earth Day Celebration” on Friday, April 19, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. outside of City Hall on Market Street in downtown Milwaukee. Mayor Tom Barrett, Alderman Robert Bauman, Matt Howard of the Office of Environmental Sustainability and Lindsay Stevens Gardner of Rock the Green will be there. The event will incorporate on-site near-zero waste efforts similar to those implemented at Rock the Green’s festival at Veterans Park, such as a bicycle pedal-powered, waste reclamation stations and local, sustainable and organic food options. For additional information, visit rockthegreen.com.


Great Waters Group’s Earth Day Celebration

Sponsored by the Great Waters Group of Sierra Club, this year’s Earth Day Celebration will be held Friday, April 19, 5-7 p.m., at the Menomonee Valley Urban Ecology Center (3700 W. Pierce St.). This family-fun event is free to all. Music will be provided by the Singers of Notre Dame Middle School. Registration and food for purchase will start at 5pm. The program begins at 5:30 p.m. and proceeds collected will go to Congregation of the Great Spirit. Street parking is available. For more information, visit sc-gwg.org or contact Dianne Dagelen at ddagelen@sbcglobal.net.



Saturday, April 20


Milwaukee Riverkeeper Spring River Cleanup

Participate in Milwaukee Riverkeeper’s 18th Annual Spring River Cleanup! Efforts will take place at 45 sites along the Milwaukee, Menomonee and Kinnickinnic rivers April 20 from 9 a.m.-noon, rain or shine. The cleanup will kick off at Lincoln Creek by Eastwood Church with Matt Howard, Mayor Barrett’s director of sustainability. Volunteers will be provided with garbage bags, gloves and free T-shirts. All ages are welcome; children should be accompanied by an adult. The event will be followed by the Trash Bash volunteer thank-you party from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the Hoyt Park Hall (1800 N. Swan Blvd., Wauwatosa). Register online or show up day-of! For more information about site locations, visit milwaukeerivercleanup.org or call 414-287-0207, ext. 6.


Good Harvest Market Celebrates Earth Day by Helping Local Nonprofit

Take a trip to Good Harvest on April 20! Good Harvest Market will donate 5% of its day’s total sales to the Waukesha County Land Conservancy as part of its Ninth Annual Earth Day Celebration on Saturday, April 20. Customers will also be able to save an additional 5% on all purchases or donate their discount to the local nonprofit. Also featured is a scavenger hunt for the kids, herb plantings, free samples and demos. There will be an organic food cookout featuring grilled chicken, hot dogs and portabella mushrooms as well. For a schedule of the day’s activities, visit GoodHarvestMarket.com.


Earth Day Celebration Open House at the Waukesha County Materials Recycling Facility

Join the Community Open House for a free tour of the Waukesha County Materials Recycling Facility (220 S. Prairie Ave.) on Saturday, April 20, from 10 a.m.-noon. Visitors will have the opportunity to learn about how recycling works in Waukesha County. Takes a behind-the-scenes tour to see how 90 tons of recyclables are sorted and baled each day for shipment to markets, and learn about products made from recycled materials and the impact that the recycling industry has on energy, natural resources and the economy. Attendees can meet and greet with the recycling mascot, Recycle Raccoon, enter to win prizes such as a home compost bin and enjoy music provided by 99.1 WMYX. Guided tours will run every 15 minutes starting at 10 a.m. All visitors must check in to receive a free tour ticket. Pre-registration is not required. For more information, visit waukeshacounty.gov/recycling or call 262-896-8300.


Milwaukee Country Transit System Celebrates Earth Day

The Milwaukee County Transit System (MCTS) is celebrating the earth-friendly benefits of riding the bus throughout earth week (April 20-26) and invites the public to join them to recognize the important role that public transportation plays in making the world greener. Visit RideMCTS.com for more information.


  • Saturday, April 20: Visit MCTS at the Urban Ecology Center’s Earth Day Festival and try our bike rack from 12-4 p.m. MCTS will be at all three UEC locations: Riverside Park, Washington Park and Menomonee Valley.


  • Sunday, April 21: Ride the Rt. 90 (Miller Park) bus to the game and get a coupon for a free ride in May (while supplies last). Milwaukee Brewers vs. Chicago Cubs, 1:10 p.m. at Miller Park. Service begins at 11:10 a.m.


  • Monday, April 22: Sticker Day! Ride the bus to get a special Earth Day sticker to proudly wear and show your family and friends (while supplies last)!


  • Tuesday, April 23: Watch social media for Special Earth Day deals from local business partners.


  • Wednesday, April 24: Thank Your Driver Day! Thank your driver in person and tell us why you appreciate their service.


  • Thursday, April 25: We’ll share 100 Reasons for Riding the Bus from MCTS customers.


  • Friday, April 26: Bring a friend along on your earth-friendly ride and send MCTS your photo.


  • April 27: The sixth annual Green Living Festival brings demonstrations, talks, and activities for the kids—all centered on healthy strategies and sustainability—to the Mitchell Park Domes.


Recycle Old Electronics This Earth Day to Benefit People with Disabilities

In celebration of Earth Day, AT&T Wisconsin and the AT&T Veterans are teaming up with IndependenceFirst and River Run Computers to encourage consumers and businesses to recycle their old electronic devices through the “Stuff the Truck for Independence Drive.” A free electronic collection drive will be held on Saturday, April 20, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Pettit National Ice Center located (77500 S. 84th St.) in Milwaukee (rain or shine). Computer donations will benefit IndependenceFirst, a nonprofit agency directed by and for the benefit of people with disabilities that primarily serves the four-county metropolitan Milwaukee area. The following electronics with a plug or battery will be accepted: computers, laptops, cell phones, tablets, appliances and TVs, as well as computer accessories like mice and keyboards. Those who are unable to attend the event Saturday can always recycle their old small electronics weekly from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the River Run Headquarters (2320 W. Camden Road) in Glendale. Those who have a large amount of computer equipment to recycle (10 workstations or more) can arrange for a pick up. For more information, email recycle@river-run.com or call 414-228-7474.



Sunday, April 21


Wehr Nature Center’s “In Celebration of Earth Day”

 “In Celebration of Earth Day” is a day filled with earth- and family-friendly activities at Wehr Nature Center (Whitnall Park, 9701 W. College Ave.) April 21, noon-4 p.m. Wehr is the primary environmental education center of the Milwaukee County Parks and is offering this opportunity to take part in fun outdoor events. To reduce their carbon footprint in getting to the event, visitors are encouraged to ride their bikes. A group bike ride to the Wehr titled "Keep Pedaling: Oak Leaf Discovery Tour” will start at South Shore Cyclery at 11 a.m. and takes the Oak Leaf Trail to Wehr Nature Center. The Oak Leaf Discovery Tour is a spring-through-fall biking, running or walking tour with stops at 16 parks where participants can explore and collect unique stamps in a passport. General admission to “In Celebration of Earth Day” is $2 per person. Friends of Wehr admission is $1 per member. The parking fee is $3 per car. There is no parking fee for bicycles.


For more information, visit countyparks.com or call Wehr Nature Center at 414-425-8550.


For more information on the group ride to Wehr, "Keep Pedaling: Oak Leaf Discovery Tour," go to southshorecyclery.com/ or call South Shore Cyclery at 414-831-0211.


To learn more about the Oak Leaf Discovery Tour, go to parkpeoplemke.org/oak-leaf-discovery-tour-2013 or call the Park People at 414-273-7275.


Schlitz Audubon Nature Center Celebrates Earth Day

Schlitz Audubon Nature Center (SANC) is celebrating Earth Day by hosting a special Celebration on Sunday, April 21, from 12-4:00 p.m. Join SANC for their annual Earth Day Celebration, an event filled with activities to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth’s environment. Featured events includes a beach comb along the beautiful Lake Michigan Shore, a Birds of Prey program, fishing and critter catching (catch-and-release only), live music, a guided naturalist hike and more. There is a fee for participating in the celebration—Member Child, $4; Member Adult, $5; Non-Member Child, $6; Non-Member Adult, $7; and all children under the age of 5 are free. For more information, visit sanc.org or call 414.352.2880.

Monday, April 22


The Iron Horse Hotel’s Lights Out for Earth Day

Join The Iron Horse Hotel on Earth Day, Monday, April 22, from 7:30-8:30 p.m. as the hotel goes dark for a candlelit cocktail hour in the hotel’s chic lobby. Unwind with a sparkling Prosecco or toast Mother Earth! For more information, visit theironhorsehotel.com/food-drink/our-events.html.



Wednesday, April 24


10th Annual Green Vehicles Workshop/Showcase

The Green Vehicles Workshop and Showcase brings together the Milwaukee area's experts on green transportation. From overarching trends to personal experiences, the workshop will provide everyone with all of the trends, technologies and fleet experiences to get up-to-date on the industry. This year’s event will feature a morning workshop and a display of green vehicles in the afternoon. Registration for the workshop is $20, which includes a continental breakfast. Students may attend free of charge, but must pre-register and show a student ID at the door. The vehicle showcase is free. For more information, visit wicleancities.org/events.php or contact Heather Goetsch 414-221-4487 or heather.goetsch@wicleancities.org


Thursday, April 25


Clean Rivers, Clean Lake Conference

The 2013 Clean Rivers, Clean Lake Conference on April 25 will offer a full day of presentations, panel discussions, workshops, and an evening event for water professionals, elected officials, representatives of local government, nonprofit organizations, businesses and residents to learn about alleviating stormwater runoff and improving water quality. The event will be at the Harley-Davidson Museum (400 W. Canal St.) and all full-day participants will receive a free museum pass and gift shop discount card with registration. Prices are $80 per person or $30 per student. Click here to register online or to view the full conference program schedule. 


Sunday, April 27


“Green Living Festival” at the Mitchell Park Domes

The Mitchell Park Domes and Wehr Nature Center have paired together to present the sixth annual “Green Living Festival,” bringing demonstrations, talks and activities for kids—all centered on healthy strategies and sustainability—to the Mitchell Park Domes (524 S. Layton Blvd.) Saturday, April 27, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. This year’s program will include a “fashion experience” (noon-1:30 p.m.) and performances by Kohl’s Wild Theater (interactive 10-minute skits at 3 p.m.) Regular admission rates apply. For more information, visit countyparks.com or call 414-257-5600.


Nationwide Drug Collection

The federal Drug Enforcement Agency will be sponsoring a nationwide drug collection event on Saturday, April 27, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Visit www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback for disposal locations.


Ongoing Opportunities


April 1-May 27: Alliance for the Great Lakes’ Annual Adopt-a-Beach Spring Kickoff

The Alliance for the Great Lakes Adopt-a-Beach event runs April 1 through Memorial Day (May 27) and is looking for volunteers. Program participants enhance beaches and coastal areas by picking up trash and record their findings in an online regional database. Volunteers also conduct water quality sampling and make science-based observations. All information logged into the Adopt-a-Beach online system is accessible to the public. Register to volunteer for a cleanup and find additional event opportunities at greatlakesadopt.org, or sign up to lead your own team at greatlakes.org/teamleader

April 15-June 4: The City of Milwaukee Department of Public Works’ Annual Project Clean & Green Program

Project Clean & Green (PCG) is a citywide program designed to foster neighborhood pride and ownership through coordinated clean-ups, street and alley sweeping, graffiti removal, and neighborhood beautification activities sponsored by community organizations. The Department of Public Works has divided the City of Milwaukee into seven PCG collection zones and residents within an assigned zone can place unwanted furniture, mattresses, household items, up to two cubic yards of tree trimmings, up to five tires, and extra recyclables at their regular garbage collection point—either the curb or alley line—on their regular collection day. DPW crews will pick up excess, unwanted household items at no charge to the resident. Normally, residents would be charged $50 to $150 for all bulky item pick-up requests larger than cubic yard (about the size of an easy chair), and will be charged those amounts after the program is completed. Visit mpw.milwaukee.gov/services/garbage_day and type in your home address to find out when PCG is scheduled for your block/street/neighborhood.


Additional Opportunities


Volunteer Center of Greater Milwaukee

Here are some of the opportunities offered by the Volunteer Center of Greater Milwaukee, a service of the Nonprofit Center. Visit volunteermilwaukee.org for more volunteer opportunities.


  • Help Lindsay Heights neighborhood residents clean out gardens and pick up litter Saturday, April 20. Call Walnut Way Conservation Corp. at 414-264-2326.


  • Help plant trees in your local park to celebrate Arbor Day on Friday, April 26. Call Keep Greater Milwaukee Beautiful at 414-272-5462 ext 103.


  • Install raised bed gardens in low-income neighborhoods, at social service agencies and for Habitat families May 11-25. Call Victory Garden Initiative at 414-431-0888.


  • Pull garlic mustard weeds at a nearby Milwaukee County Park any Saturday morning in May. Call The Park People at 414-273-7275 for the Weed-Out schedule.


  • Help older adults with spring yard cleanup in a neighborhood near you. Call the Interfaith Good Neighbor Project at 414-220-8648. 



Clean Sweep Program offered by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection

DATCP’s Clean Sweep program provides grants to local governments, planning commissions and tribes to support collections of household and agricultural hazardous waste, as well as unwanted prescription drugs. Find a Clean Sweep event near you to get rid of those hazards safely. Collection dates, times and locations are posted online at datcp.wi.gov. Search for "2013 collections." Some events take place on one or two days, while others offer continuous collections throughout the year.


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