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Earth Day Festival is Saturday at Reid Park

Citizen Staff Writer



Thousands are expected for the 15th annual Earth Day Festival on Saturday at Reid Park.

The theme this year is “All Species Deserve a Green Habitat.”

The event, at the DeMeester Outdoor Performance Center, Country Club Road and 22nd Street, is open to the public and will host about 50 exhibitors.

Exhibits will provide information about sustainability, environmental products, water conservation, water quality, household hazardous waste, wildlife, nature preserves and more.

There will be family-friendly activities such as face painting and hands-on activities for kids. A disc jockey will be playing tunes for most of the day.

People can get their bicycles registered or sign up for a carpool.

Patrons may also watch a parade led by Batucaxé, an Afro-Brazilian music drum/dance ensemble. The parade begins at 10:00 a.m.

Participants are encouraged to dress like plants, animals and insects.

Those in the parade are competing for the top prize. Winners will be announced at 11:30 a.m.

Another competition that day will be the solar house and solar car competition.

The house judging will be from 10:45 to 11 a.m. The car judging will be from 11 to 11:15 a.m.

Students from a local middle school will race the cars from 11:15 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“This festival continues to be the most popular Earth Day event in Tucson,” said Pamela Beilke, chair of the Earth Day Festival.

Another event will be the alternative fuel vehicle show. It will feature vehicles that run on alternative fuels such as biodiesel, compressed natural gas, electric, ethanol, propane and even waste vegetable oil.

Along with the alternative fuel vehicle show, those who have volunteered with Tucson Clean & Beautiful (TC&B) will be recognized.

Bethany Hontz from Saguaro National Park will recognize those volunteers who battle buffelgrass.

There will also be performances by the Retro Rockets, Alumni from Utterback Middle School and the Shadz Band. The Retro Rockets, a 60s Rock and Roll tribute band, will play songs by The Beatles, The Yardbirds, The Turtles, the Byrds, The Young Rascals and Roy Orbison. The alumni band will play swing music.

Last year about 5,000 people attended the Tucson Earth Day Festival.

If you go

What: 15th annual Earth Day Festival

Where: Reid Park at the DeMeester Outdoor Performance Center, Country Club Road and 22nd Street

When: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Details: Call Pamela J. Beilke, Chair, 975-9426 or online at: www.tucsonearthday.org

The Reid Park Zoo is offering free admission in conjunction with the Earth Day Festival.

What is Earth Day?

On April 22, 1970, 20 million people across America celebrated the first Earth Day.

Now Earth Day is celebrated annually around the globe on or around April 22.

Through the combined efforts of the U.S. government, grass-roots organizations and citizens, what started as a day of national environmental recognition has evolved into a worldwide campaign to protect the global environment.

Source: www.eps.gov/earthday

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