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For Release: Thursday, April 18, 2013

DEC Commissioner Martens Announces 2013 Earth Day Activities

Diverse Environmental Activities Planned Throughout the State

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) will commemorate the 43rd Anniversary of Earth Day with DEC-sponsored events around the state from April 19 through May 4, DEC Commissioner Martens announced today. The earth-friendly activities include tree plantings, pharmaceutical collection events, litter clean up, and a variety of exhibits to educate New Yorkers on the importance of sustaining the environment.

"Earth Day continues to be a global movement to raise the consciousness of individuals, families, communities, businesses and government about how to co-exist with the environment in a sustainable manner," said Commissioner Martens. "Every New Yorker has a role to play in ensuring future generations are able to enjoy the state's natural resources and benefit from a clean environment. I encourage all New Yorkers to participate in some of the events to learn more about the state's natural resources and practices we can make part of our daily lives to protect the environment."

In addition to hosting the events below, next week DEC Conservation Officers will conduct road checks of heavy duty diesel trucks to ensure they comply with emissions standards. The road checks will focus on environmental justice areas in cities across the state. Locations and times will be announced.

Earth Day was founded by Wisconsin U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson in 1970 after he toured the devastation of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. On April 22, 1970 demonstrations by an estimated 20 million Americans advocated for a healthy, sustainable environment.

In the same year as the first Earth Day, the state Department of Environmental Conservation (July) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (December) were created and the Clean Air Act was enacted, providing the authority for federal and state governments to limit emissions. In 1972, sweeping amendments were made to the federal Water Pollution Control Act, which was the predecessor to the Clean Water Act. The Endangered Species Act became law in 1973.

Earth Week 2013 Activities

Additional announcements in celebration of Earth Day will be made throughout next week.

Friday, April 19

Citizen Science: Frogwatch: 7:30 p.m.
Five Rivers Environmental Education Center, 56 Game Farm Road, Delmar
A Five Rivers environmental educator will help participants learn more about frogs in the area and ways to help monitor how they are doing. On this indoor/outdoor study, participants will learn to identify species by call and then venture out to survey the number of species heard and the intensity of their calls.

Saturday, April 20

Watchable Wildlife: Bringing Back the Bluebird: 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Five Rivers Environmental Education Center, 56 Game Farm Road, Delmar
April is a great time to watch for eastern bluebirds, and Five Rivers is the best place to see them. Join DEC for an indoor overview of the conservation challenges which eastern bluebirds face, followed by a search for bluebirds along the center's "bluebird trail." Tips on how to help advance bluebird conservation will be provided.

Watchable Wildlife: Birds of Prey Days 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Braddock Bay Fish and Wildlife Management Area
Lake Ontario Parkway, Greece (Take E. Manitou Road Exit off Parkway)
10:00 a.m.- Migration Games & Activities for kids presented by the Genesee Valley Audubon Society 11:00 a.m.~ "Bird Photography for the Budget Minded" - Presentation by Carl Crumley, Nature Photographer 12:30 p.m. "Barn Owl Conservation: Habitat Protection and Nest Box Placement"- Chuck Rosenburg, NYSDEC Wildlife Ecologist. Chuck will briefly review barn owl natural history and habitat requirements, then focus on conservation measures (including habitat protection and nest box placement) that are necessary to ensure stable barn owl populations. Meet Live Barn Owls, 2:00 p.m. The Rochester Peregrine Falcon Project presentation with June Summers from the Genesee Valley Audubon Society.

Annual Earth Day Celebration at DEC regional office: 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
317 Washington Street, Watertown
Approximately 20 exhibits, including giveaway items, activities for students and educational lessons. Highlights include: Forestry Division: free tree seedlings, information on invasive species, Woodsy Owl and Smokey Bear on hand. New this year will be an exhibit of live birds of prey. Fisheries Unit: live fish, demonstration of fish netting. Wildlife Unit: live and mounted animals. Solid Waste: Button making and information on recycling. Spills Unit: exhibit on how gasoline and oil spills are cleaned up.

Pine Bush Earth Day Cleanup Event: 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center
195 New Karner Road, Albany
A variety of conservation and cleanup activities suitable for all ages will take place.

Teacher Workshop: Project WILD: 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
SUNY New Paltz, 1 Hawk Dr, New Paltz ("Old Main" Building)
Five Rivers staff will conduct a science-based workshop that will help educators incorporate ecological principles into their class curriculums. Project WILD is an award-winning national, interdisciplinary program for teachers and youth leaders. This hands-on workshop will introduce instructional activities which integrate wildlife themes into the core 3R disciplines. Participants will receive a free Project WILD K-12 Curriculum and Activity Guide full of hands-on activities which correlate to NYS learning standards. Call Five Rivers at 518-475-0291 to register.

Pharmaceutical Collection event: 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Oneida-Herkimer Recycling Center, 80 Leland Avenue Ext., Utica
Held by Oneida-Herkimer Solid Waste Authority. DEC's Environmental Conservation Officers oversee the collection of unused medication.

Flower Folklore: 10:30 a.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Did you know that dandelions were used to tell time, or that buttercups were a sign of good luck? Take a closer look at our local wildflowers on this guided walk. Registration required; call 716-683-5959 to sign up.

Educator Workshop: Great Lakes Institute: 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Reinstein environmental educators will conduct a workshop to help teachers incorporate the Great Lakes into their classroom curriculum through standards-based, hands-on lesson plans and in-depth instruction in local Great Lakes issues. Participants will receive Project WET and Project WILD Aquatic curriculum and activity guides. For educators of students in grades 6-12. Registration is required; call 716-683-5959 to sign up.

Monday, April 22

Naming of State Forest Event: 2:00 p.m.
Forestport Elementary School
10275 St RT 28, Forestport
Event to announce the winners of the Name the State Forest Contest followed by putting up the state forest sign at the new state forest.

Citizen Science Eel Project: 6:45 p.m. - 8:45 p.m.
Norrie Point Environmental Center, 256 Norrie Point Way, Staatsburg
DEC's Estuary Program will host a group of Marist College students at Norrie Point for seining and other activities.

Watchable Wildlife: Birdwatching Walk: 12:30 p.m.
Peebles Island State Park, Peebles Island Road, Waterford

Workshop: How Green is Your Clean? 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Pollution Prevention Institute (P2I) at RIT (funded by DEC) will hold a series of workshops for the public at Reinstein Woods as part of their EPA grant "Green Homes for Cleaner Lakes."

Wednesday, April 24

NYS Pollution Prevention Institute's student competition
The "G2C - Go Green on Campus" 2nd Annual Student Competition opened on September 7, 2012 and will conclude with participating teams competing in an exhibition at the Legislative Office Building in Albany, NY on April 24. This year's competition includes teams from Syracuse, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute UB, RIT, Clarkson, Siena, Skidmore, CUNY-CSI, and the New School. Projects address on-campus sustainability such as rainwater harvesting, low-flow sink aerators, photovolataics, green infrastructure and residential composting. Additional details may be found on NYS Pollution Prevention Institute's website listed in the right column .

Hemlock-Canadice Lake Celebration: 2:00 p.m.
Hike Robb's Trail at Hemlock Canadice State Forest, Old Bald Hill Road South, Hemlock
DEC and The Nature Conservancy commemoration of the purchase of Hemlock-Canadice State Forest.

Thursday, April 25

Citizen Science: Woodcock Watch: 7:00 p.m.
56 Game Farm Road, Delmar
To help usher in Arbor Day, Five Rivers staff will lead the Hudson Mohawk Bird Club's annual woodcock survey.

After-School Escape Public Program: 4:30 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center
93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Children in grades K through 5 and their caregivers are invited to enjoy a one-hour program for kids featuring fun, outdoor activities.

Adults-only Full Moon Nature Walk: 8:30 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Adults are invited to join a Reinstein environmental educator for a moonlit walk through the woods to look for nocturnal critters and the planet Saturn during the second full moon of spring. Bring binoculars if you have them. For adults only. Registration required; call 716-683-5959 to sign up.

Friday, April 26

Friends of Five Rivers 41st Anniversary and Awards Reception: 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Albany Country Club, 300 Wormer Road, Voorheesvlle
The Friends of Five Rivers cordially invites members and friends to a 41st Anniversary and Awards Reception at the Albany Country Club, 300 Wormer Road, Voorheesville. WMHT's Scott Sauer will emcee festivities celebrating the history and success of the center and the Friends, including presentation of the Friends of Five Rivers Community Service Award, Environmental Education Award and Young Environmentalist Award. Call the Friends of Five Rivers at 518-475-0295 for ticket information.

Family Full Moon Nature Walk: 8:30 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Join us for a moonlit walk through the woods as we look for nocturnal critters and the planet Saturn during the second full moon of spring. Bring binoculars if you have them. For all ages. Registration required; call 716-683-5959 to sign up.

City of Ogdensburg Arbor Day Celebration: 9:30 a.m.
Hamilton Park, 806 Greene Street, Ogdensburg
For the 20th consecutive year, Ogdensburg has been recognized as Tree City USA. To celebrate, the City of Ogdensburg Tree Commission will plant a Tulip Poplar 'Liriodendron' tree in Hamilton Park. The brief ceremony will take place at 9:30 a.m. and the public is urged to attend. School classes from Sherman School will also attend the ceremony. DEC state foresters to assist in tree planting.

Watertown Arbor Day Celebration: 11:30 a.m.
Whitewater Park, Newell Street, Watertown
Also, on Saturday, April 27 at 8:00 a.m., volunteers from Tree Watertown and Watertown Rotary will meet at the fairground's ice-skating rink parking lot to plant 30 to 40 trees around the city.

Saturday, April 27

Spring into Nature: 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge, 1101 Casey Road, Basom
The refuge's annual celebration to welcome spring back to the swamps will include nature related exhibits, educational activities and nature programs. Reinstein staff will provide hands-on activities and displays during this community event.

Heckscher Spring Festival (4/27-4/28): 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Heckscher State Park, Heckscher Parkway Field 1, East Islip
Long Island's premiere Earth Day festival with many programs and presenters. DEC regional environmental educators will host a display with information about summer camps, DEC publications, hands-on displays, and DEC education programs in the region. Phone: (631) 581-2100 for more information.

Teacher Workshop: PROJECT WILD: 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Five Rivers Environmental Education Center, 56 Game Farm Road, Delmar
Project WILD is an award-winning national, interdisciplinary program for teachers and youth leaders. This hands-on workshop will introduce instructional activities which integrate wildlife themes into the core 3R disciplines. Participants will receive a free Project WILD K-12 Curriculum and Activity Guide full of hands-on activities which correlate to NYS learning standards. Please call Five Rivers at 518-475-0291 to register by Wednesday, April 24.

Educator Workshop: Great Lakes Institute: 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Buffalo State College, 1300 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo
Reinstein environmental educators will conduct a workshop to help teachers incorporate the Great Lakes into their classroom curriculum through standards-based, hands-on lesson plans and in-depth instruction in local Great Lakes issues. Participants will receive Project WET and Project WILD Aquatic curriculum and activity guides. For educators of students in grades 6-12. Registration is required; call 716-683-5959 to sign up.

Tree Planting / Streambank Restoration: 9:00 a.m.
Greenwood Creek State Forest Picnic Area
Off State Route 3 in the town of Pitcairn, St. Lawrence County
DEC Lands and forests staff are teaming up the St. Lawrence County Environmental Management Council and Girl and Boy Scouts to plant shrubs and trees along the banks of Greenwood Creek to stabilize the stream bank. Public is welcome. Call the Potsdam DEC office for more information: 315-265-3090.

Arbor Day Service Project: Crabapple planting: 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Five Rivers Environmental Education Center, 56 Game Farm Road, Delmar
Join local scouts and other volunteers in celebration of Arbor Day as we plant 3'- 4' crabapple trees in our historic scion orchard. Garden gloves recommended. Please call Five Rivers at 518-475-0291 to register by Wednesday, April 24.

Adams Arbor Day: 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
South Jefferson Central School, Clark Building, Route 11, Adams
Sponsored by South Jefferson Chamber of Commerce. NYSDEC Forestry staff will have a booth and hand out tree seedlings.

Zenda Farm Arbor Day Celebration: 9:00 a.m. - noon
Route 12E, west of the village of Clayton
Sponsored by Thousand Islands Land Trust. NYSDEC Forestry staff will be on hand to answer questions.

Growing Garden Series for Kids: Transplanting Plants and Composting: 10:30 a.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Children ages 6 to 8 will learn how we can use compost and dirt to put our plants into pots or a garden bed. This is the second in a three-part series. Registration required; call 716-683-5959 to sign up.

Destination: Earth 2013: 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Hawk Creek Wildlife Center, Grover Rd & Luther Rd, East Aurora
Reinstein staff will provide hands-on activities and displays during this community event.

Monday, April 29

Workshop: Safer Household Products 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Pollution Prevention Institute (P2I) at RIT (funded by DEC) will hold a series of workshops for the public at Reinstein Woods as part of their EPA grant "Green Homes for Cleaner Lakes."

Tuesday, April 30

Village of Canton Arbor Day Celebration: 12:30 p.m.
Bend in the River Park located at the end of Lincoln Street on the Grasse River.
Village to celebrating their "Tree City" designation. There will be tree plantings in the honor of past village mayors with DEC's Regional Forester.

Thursday, May 2

After-School Escape Public Program: 4:30 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
Children in grades K through 5 and their caregivers are invited to enjoy a one-hour program for kids featuring fun, outdoor activities.

Saturday, May 4

Teacher Workshop: Project Learning Tree: 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Five Rivers Environmental Education Center, 56 Game Farm Road Delmar
Award-winning curriculum-enhancement program for teachers and youth leaders. This interactive workshop will introduce instructional activities which integrate forest-related themes into math, science and reading/writing disciplines. Participants will receive a free Project Learning Tree Pre-K to grade 8 Environmental Education Activity Guide full of stimulating hands-on activities which correlate to Common Core State Standards. Call Five Rivers at 518-475-0291 by Friday, April 26 to register or for more information.

Earth Day in May 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Reinstein Woods: 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
The public is invited to help clear debris from the trails and prepare them for summer; native wildflowers will also be planted in the woods. Families, scout groups and students needing service hours are welcome.

Earth Day in May: 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center: 93 Honorine Drive, Depew
The public is invited to help clear debris from the trails and prepare them for summer; native wildflowers will also be planted in the woods. Families, scout groups and students needing service hours are welcome.

Plant Sale and Spring Celebration: 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Stony Kill Farm Environmental Education Center, 79 Farmstead Lane, Wappingers Falls (2.5 miles north of Newburgh/Beacon Bridge on Route 9D; use main entrance at the stone pillars)
Join Stony Kill Foundation for their annual vegetable and herb plant sale and celebration of Spring. Enjoy nature-based activities and crafts for children, as well as hands-on demonstrations on natural history topics. Visit the animals in the 19th Century barn and learn about sustainable agricultural practices. Live music and food for sale will round out your day at the Farm.

Sunday, May 5

Earth Fest: Noon - 4 p.m.
Rogers Environmental Education Center, 2721 State Highway 80, Sherburne
Celebrate spring and the earth we depend on. Join Friends of Rogers for fun activities, games, entertainment, and earth-friendly exhibitors while learning how to live a more sustainable lifestyle.