Earth Day to be celebrated April 21 at The Farm at SOU
Southern Oregon University and community partners will celebrate Earth Day at The Farm at SOU from 3:30 to 7 p.m. on Friday, April 21, by offering exhibits, live performances, an electric vehicle showcase, bike rodeo, art, food trucks and more.
Earth Day has been celebrated annually each April 22 in the U.S. since 1970, and globally since 1990; it is being observed a day early this year at SOU because the actual holiday lands on a weekend. The SOU Student Sustainability Team (formerly ECOS) has hosted a local version of the event for more than 20 years – historically, in the Stevenson Union courtyard. The Student Sustainability Team moved the event to The Farm at SOU last year to help fill a void that was left when the Rogue Valley Earth Day event – traditionally held at the neighboring ScienceWorks – was discontinued.
Partners in hosting this year’s Earth Day celebration are Sustainability at SOU, the Ashland Food Co-op, the ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum and Southern Oregon Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Association (SOHEVA).
Live entertainment will be featured throughout the event on The Farm’s Thalden Pavilion stage, and Ashland Food Co-op will host a “Play Zone” in the ScienceWorks plaza, where there will be activities for all ages – chalk art, games and more. ScienceWorks – The Farm’s next-door neighbor – is offering extended hours (open until 7 p.m.) and free afternoon admission on the day of the event. A “quiet zone” for those needing a break from the action will be located in the ScienceWorks geodesic dome, with earplugs, snacks, seating and quiet activities.
SOHEVA members will display their EV’s at the electric vehicle showcase, and answer questions on their electric driving experiences. Lithia Motors Green Cars will offer test drives or rides for a true EV experience for those who register to participate.
Kids of all ages who bring their bikes to the event can take a spin around the “Bike Rodeo,” hosted by Rogue Valley Transportation District, to learn and practice bike safety.
More than 30 community organizations and sustainability minded businesses will host educational exhibits and opportunities for action. Many will also participate in the “Earth Day Ecoquest,” to win prizes for completing activities at designated booths. Those who walk, bike or carpool to the event can stop by the RVTD exhibit and get two bonus Ecoquest tokens to be used toward Ecoquest prizes.
Participants at the Earth Day celebration can also sign up with The Farm at SOU to help with planting and weeding spring crops.
The Farm at SOU is located at 155 Walker Avenue, Ashland Oregon. Attendees are being asked to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions by walking, biking, skateboarding or taking transit to the event. On-site parking for people with disabilities or limited mobility will be available, as well as on-site “bike valets” offering secure bicycle parking.
To learn more about the event, visit sou.edu/earthday.