Earth Day is April 22, which is a Sunday this year, making events convenient for attendees who work or go to school. Small-scale events are scheduled for that day, but as is typical in Ventura County, organizers of the largest events scheduled their celebrations throughout the month, encouraging local residents to attend more than one Earth Day commemoration.
The county’s largest festivals will be in Oxnard (April 14, Downtown Plaza Park, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), Ventura (April 21, Plaza Park, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.), and Ojai (April 21, Libbey Park, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.).
Normally, Thousand Oaks Arbor/Earth Day is also one of the largest festivals, but this year, the city is trying something different. As its website (www.toaks.org/gogreen) says, “to better engage with our residents,” it is organizing a series of “in-depth engagement and education” opportunities throughout the month, culminating in workshops, lectures, an Eco-Hero show, a Master Gardener Plant Sale and an opportunity to create art from discarded material on April 28, at the Grant Brimhall Library, 1401 Janss Road, starting at 9 a.m.
You may see advertisements, posters, email or social media outreach for these events, but you are less likely to see promotional material for smaller local opportunities to celebrate Earth Day. The city of Fillmore’s Earth Day festival, April 22, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Fillmore’s Central Park, 250 Central Ave., will include some of the same organizations staffing booths at the larger events. With smaller crowds in Fillmore, however, attendees may have more opportunity for conversations and educational opportunities. The city needs more booths, and you can arrange for yours by contacting Aduque@ci.fillmore.ca.us or calling 805-524-1500, ext. 241.
Another less publicized event will be a cleanup at Bottle Village, in Simi Valley. Over many years, “Grandma Prisbrey” built walls, walkways and structures with used glass bottles and concrete, but the site was heavily damaged in the 1994 Northridge Earthquake. Today, the remnants of Bottle Village still stand as a folk art tribute to reuse, but cleanup is needed, so volunteers who call ahead (at 805-501-1929) are welcome 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on April 22.
Volunteers are also needed in Ventura on April 22, to plant trees along Ventura Avenue. Restore Ventura will plant city-approved trees, starting at their garden site, 572 N. Ventura Ave., at 9 a.m. Before the event, more sponsors are needed to pay for trees and maintenance. To sponsor, go to https://restore.webconnex.com/donate, and select “ventura” under “giving options,” then “street trees” under “comments.”
In Ventura on April 21, the Earth Day Ecofest Bike Ride will assemble at 1901 Spinnaker Drive, the Channel Islands National Park headquarters, at 8:30 a.m., where city and county leaders will address the topic of bicycling. Cyclists will depart by 9 a.m., proceeding from the Ventura Harbor to the Earth Day festival in Plaza Park, where bicycle valet service will be available. Riders can ride as a group back to the harbor at noon or return on their own. All riders must wear helmets.
A Thousand Oaks-based organization is coordinating a different type of group physical activity for Earth Day, a 5K and 10K “virtual race.” Unlike all other events, this one does not take place in any location. Instead, registrants self-report their times. Also unlike other Earth Day events, this one requires a fee, but the $18 fee includes a donation to a nonprofit, a racing bib and (for those who report completing their target distances) a shipped stained-glass medal with an image of the earth. For more information, see https://www.eventbrite.com/e/earth-day-5k-10k-thousand-oaks-tickets-43418801805
https://www.formlets.com/forms/rQFiWRFsUgGpPIkA/ for GSA Earth Day tour