Fun ways to protect the planet
Whether it’s stomping around in the mud, rolling down a hill, picking up litter or marching along the streets of Montreal, there are plenty of ways for kids and families to have fun and make a difference on Earth Day. In fact, children are an essential part of why Earth Day, which is April 22, 2013, is such a widespread and engaging annual event.
Earth Day Canada’s president Jed Goldberg says it’s important for kids to get involved with environmental activities year-round. “Youth are the folks who are going to be the leaders of business and government, setting policy and making decisions,” he said. “We want them to consider the environment as a priority.”
Goldberg notes that kids can be very influential; he says that simple school projects across the country have resulted in government-supported plastic and garbage reduction initiatives and massive shoreline cleanups.
“Earth Day is a time when everyone’s thinking about the environment. It’s really the strongest opportunity for those involved with finding solutions to communicate their message to a willing audience,” he said. “It’s the New Year’s Eve of the environmental movement!”
And the environment shouldn’t only be celebrated once a year. Earth Day Canada has a program called Eco Kids, where parents and teachers can work with children and youth on environmental projects year-round. For more information, visit www.ecokids.ca.
Montreal has no shortage of ways to get involved with Earth Day. From a walk in the woods to recycled art workshops and an annual earth-awareness march, check out the fun ways the whole family can celebrate our planet this year:
Friday, April 19, 8 p.m. and Saturday, April 20, 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Daisy and the Wonder Weeds musical
In this musical, Daisy and Dandelion discover Mayor Megamore has a plan to pave their garden so they join forces to fight the bulldozers and grow a Wonder Weed that will change their town forever. Tickets are $25 for adults, $18 for children under 12.
Shows are at the Théâtre Beaubois, 4901 du College Beaubois, Pierrefonds. For tickets or more information call (514) 685-5093 or visit www.productionscoracole.com.
Sunday, April 21, noon to 4 p.m.
Reptiles wake up at Cap St. Jacques
Find out what reptiles do in the spring when they wake up after the winter. Go on a reptile hunt, and learn about the amazing survival skills that turtles and snakes have developed.
This free event takes place in the park’s farm, 183 ch. du Cap St. Jacques, Montreal. For more information, call (514) 280-6829.
Sunday, April 21, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Free access to the Morgan Arboretum
Montreal Families Magazine and the Morgan Arboretum have teamed up to give families free access to one of Montreal’s largest forests when you mention this article at the entrance. A naturalist will walk the trails to answer questions about the region’s flora and fauna. In addition to an expanse of natural woodland containing examples of most of Quebec’s native trees, it is also home to 30 species of mammals, 20 species of reptiles and amphibians, and over 170 species of birds.
One pass per family for up to six people. No dogs allowed. The Morgan Arboretum is at 150 ch. des Pins, Ste. Anne de Bellevue. For more information, call (514) 398-7811 or visit www.morganarboretum.org.
Sunday, April 21, noon to 5 p.m.
Earth Day party at Coop la Maison Verte
Enjoy local musicians, cake, gardening games, colouring, dancing, playtime, and organic, fair trade coffee in this West End community eco store. The annual party is a celebration of the Earth that is at the root of the Coop’s operations.
Coop la Maison Verte is located at 5785 Sherbrooke St. W., Montreal. For more information, call (514) 489-8000, or visit www.cooplamaisonverte.com/en/ node/114.
Sunday, April 21, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Make a seed quilt at the Redpath Museum
In this unique botanical art workshop, you can make art from seeds that are collected from around the McGill University campus. You’ll learn to identify seeds and make a small patch for an environmentally friendly seed quilt that will be planted near the museum. Come back and visit a few months later to see if your art grew!
The Redpath Museum is at 859 Sherbrooke St. W., Montreal. Admission is $7 per child, free for accompanying adults. To reserve a spot, call (514) 398-4094 or, for more information, visit www.mcgill.ca/redpath.
Sunday, April 21, 2 p.m.
Equiterre march for the Earth
Join hundreds of individuals and families for a family-oriented, kilometre-long march beginning at Place des Festivales, which will be followed by a concert. The goal is to raise environmental awareness and have fun, and to highlight that youth are a critical part of protecting the environment.
This event is organized by Equiterre, an organization that encourages people to make ecological and equitable choices. Join marchers on Jeanne-Mance St., between Ste. Catherine St. and de Maisonneuve Blvd. W., at Place des Festivales. For more information visit www.marchepourlaterre.org/en.
Sunday, April 21, 2 p.m.
The great “GREEN” spring clean at the Mile End Library
Learn all about household cleaners that are safe for your health and the environment, and the products that damage the soil, water and air. Presentation in French by Bio Terre. The library is at 5434 Parc Ave. For more information, call (514) 872-2141.
Sunday, April 21, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Eco-friendly building at the Canadian Centre for Architecture
Learn how to build your own small urban garden in any type of container, how to do vermicomposting, and how to build with recycled materials during a construction workshop.
The Canadian Centre for Architecture is located at 1920 Baile St., Montreal. The event is bilingual and free. For more information, call (514) 939-7026 or visit www.cca.qc.ca.
Take the Earth Day Canada challenge
Earth Day Canada is issuing a 30-day challenge, called Act for the Planet, to encourage people to take up activities to make their lives, and their world, a little greener. Specific projects have been set up for children, including step-by-step guides to do things like build a bug house, grow and eat sprouts or reconnect with nature. For adults, there will be one challenge a day, starting April 1, that will be posted on the website, www.earthday.ca.
Various ways to celebrate Earth Day
- Call your town/borough hall to see what it has planned for Earth Day.
- Visit www.jourdelaterre.org to see what activities Earth Day Quebec has planned for Montreal.
- Immerse yourself in nature in our very own city at the Biodome, Insectarium, Botanical Gardens, or at your local park.
- Pick up one piece of garbage, go meat free for the day, or donate to important environmental organizations like Earth Day Canada, Greenpeace or the David Suzuki Foundation.