ITHACA — Earth Day officially takes place Monday, April 22, but the Ithaca area is getting a jump on the celebration, kicking off with events starting Thursday, April 18.
The Climate Smart Climate Ready Regional Conference will commence on Thursday, with the opening keynote speech, “Winning the Climate Fight,” given by Mark Hertsgaard at the Hangar Theatre. That will run from 7-9 p.m.
On Friday, April 19, the conference will shift to Cortland for the morning, with “Weather or Not: Effects of Changing Weather on Local Agriculture” set for 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the New York State Grange building auditorium in Cortland. “Liability & Risk in Times of Climate Disruption” will take place from noon to 1 p.m. at the Tompkins County Public Library in Ithaca, followed by “Climate Change & Public Health” from 5:30-6:30 p.m. at Island Health and Fitness. All of those events are free of charge.
The downtown conference, which costs $20 for adults and $12 for students to attend, will utilize rooms at the Tompkins County Public Library and theaters at Cinemapolis, all in downtown Ithaca. On Sunday, the conference will incorporate the Cortland Blooms, at the Cortland County Office Building and Cortland Corset Building, and Ithaca Earth Day celebrations into its schedule.
Events on Thursday, Friday and Sunday are free and open to the public. The Saturday conference costs $20 ($21.69 with service fee) for adults and $12 ($13.41 with service fee) for students. For a full itinerary and to order tickets, visit http://www.climatesmartclimateready.org.
Ithaca’s Earth Day will take place from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 21, at the Ithaca Farmers Market Pavilion at Steamboat Landing. There will be exhibits and vendors on hand, and the event will open with a Haudenosaunee prayer, followed by an introduction from Gay Nicholson, Sustainable Tompkins Board of Directors president and director of programs.
Other stage events include a presentation from Hertsgaard, titled “Parenting in a Warming World,” from 12:15-12:35 p.m.; Angie Beeler from Music & Motion with children’s activities from 12:45-1:15 p.m.; Sim Redmond performing from 1:30-2:15 p.m., the Crow Weaver Band from 2:30-3:15 p.m. and Dan Hill presenting sounds and stories from the natural world from 3:30-4:15 p.m.
Also part of the festivities, with accolades set to be announced around 3:15 p.m., will be the CLASSE Xraise Wind Turbine Challenge. Open to all ages, visitors can build their own small wind turbines and test them using a human-powered fan.
Earth Day is free and open to the public. Exhibitor booths are still available. For more information or to participate, please contact Joey Gates at (607) 387-7799 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Local First Ithaca will be showing the movie “Bag It” at 5 p.m. at Cinemapolis on Sunday. Co-sponsoring that showing includes GreenStar Co-op, Tompkins County Solid Waste, Finger Lakes Reuse, Ithaca Farmers' Market, Downtown Ithaca Alliance, Town of Ithaca and Environmental Management Council of TC.
Other Earth Day events include:
— GreenStar Natural Foods Market is already in the midst of its 12 Days of Earth Day celebration, which will culminate on Earth Day itself, Monday, April 22. Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick will dedicate the second annual GIAC Urban Art Show on the entrance side of GreenStar’s West End store from 4-5 p.m.
The urban art show this year is a collaboration between GIAC’s after school Urban Art Club at Ithaca High School and GreenStar. Educators Jay Stooks and Rahmel Mack have been running the club for four years and the students have worked on various community art projects. The mural that they are showing for this event is being created on recycled oak pews donated by Significant Elements.
— Ithaca College also is in the middle a 12 Days of Earth Week celebration, with different themes for each day; the remaining ones include No Shower Day (today, Wednesday, April 17), Sustainable Business Day (Thursday, April 18), Take a Ride Day (Friday, April 19), Earth Action Day (Saturday, April 20), Sun. Sleep Outside Day (Sunday, April 21) and Earth Day (Monday, April 22). There are special events scheduled for each day. For more information about Earth Week events at Ithaca College, visit http://www.ithacalibrary.com/sp/subjects/earthday.
On Saturday and Sunday, IC will host the Youth Power Summit/New Economy Summit in the Park Center for Business and Sustainable Enterprise at Friends Hall, aiming to equip participants with knowledge and skills to become more politically and environmentally engaged and aware.
Participation in the summit, which will include lectures, panel presentations and workshops, is free. Activities will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Saturday and 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Sunday. The summit is a youth-led project intended to create a space where young people, students, faculty, community members and business leaders can converge to explore the intersections of economic, social and climate justice issues and develop the tools, organizing strategies and collective frameworks to actively pursue a vision for a just, sustainable and prosperous community.
Participants are asked to register in advance at http://youthpowersummit2013.wordpress.com, where those interested can also obtain more information.
— At Cornell University, Peter Kareiva, chief scientist for the Nature Conservancy, will deliver the Iscol Distinguished Environmental Lecture from 5-6:30 p.m. in Call Auditorium at Kennedy Hall. The lecture is titled “Overcoming Dogma and Prophecies of Doom to Save Nature.”
There also will be the Earth Day 5K at the Cornell Plantations Arboretum at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 26.
Animals from the Cayuga Nature Center will be present before the race! Pre-registration is $12, and day-of registration is $15. T-shirts are on sale now for $10 each. All profits benefit the Cayuga Nature Center.
Check-in and day-of-race registration starts at 4 p.m.; parking is available in Lot B by the Vet School.
For more information, contact Sarah Loftus at email@example.com.