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Glendora sheds light on Earth Day

George Munoz of the Glendora Parks and Trees Division and David Borunda of the Parks and Recreation Department distributed helium balloons to community members last Saturday in honor of Earth Day at the Glendora City Hall, Public Library and Plaza. Events and activities in celebration of Earth Day were kicked off with a bike ride at 8:30 a.m. and included free environmentally friendly waste and recycling locations, a treasure hunt for kids and live music. / photo by Helen Arase

George Munoz of the Glendora Parks and Trees Division and David Borunda of the Parks and Recreation Department distributed helium balloons to community members last Saturday in honor of Earth Day at the Glendora City Hall, Public Library and Plaza. Events and activities in celebration of Earth Day were kicked off with a bike ride at 8:30 a.m. and included free environmentally friendly waste and recycling locations, a treasure hunt for kids and live music. / photo by Helen Arase

Gabriela Krupa
Staff Writer

Glendora’s Earth Day Festival attracted families and community members for a variety of activities Saturday at the Glendora City Hall, Public Library and Plaza.

“Earth Day brings the community together for a good cause,” Kristy Batcheller, Glendora Public Library’s bookstore manager, said.

Officially Earth Day is April 22, although communities worldwide often honor the annual event throughout the week of Earth Day.

Gaylord Nelson, a senator from Wisconsin, founded Earth Day as an environmental education session first held on April 22, 1970. It grew out of a 1969 United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization conference in San Francisco, where peace activist John McConnell suggested a day to honor the earth.

By 1990 environmental activist Denis Hayes had taken the movement internationally and organized more than 100 events.  Today millions honor Earth Day in their own way.

“We have the kind of people that enjoy their neighborhood,” Batcheller said.

With arts and crafts for kids and advanced gardening workshops for adults, the event had something for everyone. The event also featured giveaways of plants and balloons.

Workshops went on from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and included information and tips about planting and helping the environment.

Among the workshops were “Drought Tolerance and Native Plants,” “Advanced Smart Gardening and Composting” and “The Children’s Recycled Craft Project Workshop.”

“The festival is a good mix of the young and older generation,” University of La Verne alumna Jessica Ramirez, an intern at the Office of Economic Development in Glendora, said.

“Twenty or 30 years ago people would deny that the environment is affected by us, but now no one can deny it,” Jose Ramirez, a San Gabriel Valley resident, said. “We all see the changes within our lives.”

With more than 100 volunteers, the festival was designed to educate and entertain, including animal mascots walking around for photo ops.

“I realized volunteering is a lot of work, but I would do it again,” mascot chaperone Reanne Schaffer, a freshman at Glendora High School, said.

Ramirez said that he tries to make a difference by conserving water and planting smarter.

He said the workshops have helped him think about things he normally would not think about like location and sufficiency.

The food, music and informational booths entertained and informed.

The festival also offered opportunities for local businesses to be involved.

“We are trying to encourage people to shop local and stay within the city,” Ramirez said. “Not only does it help the environment with using less gas, but it helps the city.”

Glendora’s Public Library also tried to spread its message on Saturday.

Batcheller said that the library hopes residents will install Little Free Libraries – or small containers of books to share with community members – in their front yards to encourage children to share and reuse books.

“We always have a huge turnout when it comes to our city’s events, which bring the community closer together,” Batcheller said.

Gabriela Krupa can be reached at gabriela.krupa@laverne.edu.

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