Earth Day is an annual event held worldwide to demonstrate support for environmental protection and is observed on April 22. The date was designated as International Mother Earth Day by a consensus resolution adopted by the United Nations in 2009. Earth Day is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network and is celebrated in more than 192 countries. It is the largest secular holiday in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year. Environmental groups have sought to make Earth Day into a day of action which changes human behavior and provokes policy changes.
The name and concept of Earth Day was pioneered by John McConnell in 1969 at a UNESCO Conference in San Francisco. He proposed March 21, 1970, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. This day of nature’s equipoise was later sanctioned in a Proclamation signed by the Secretary General of the United Nations. A month later a separate Earth Day was founded by Senator Gaylord Nelson as an environmental teach-in first held on April 22, 1970. While this April 22 Earth Day was focused on the U.S., it changed internationally in 1990 with organized events in 141 nations. The first April 22 Earth Day had participants and celebrants in two thousand colleges and universities, roughly ten thousand primary and secondary schools, and hundreds of communities across the U.S. More importantly, it brought 20 million Americans out into the spring sunshine for peaceful demonstrations in favor of environmental reform.
Voorhees Township will celebrate Earth Day on Sunday, April 21, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Voorhees Environmental Park (former Buzby Landfill) located on Centennial Boulevard. The event is being coordinated by VECEF (Voorhees Environmental and Cultural Education Foundation) along with Rutgers University Center for Urban Environmental Sustainability. There will be a kite flying demonstration and contests for children. Also in attendance will be a Pollination Station manned by the South Jersey Beekeepers Association along with stations manned by Sustainable Voorhees and the Voorhees Environmental Commission. There will be food vendors present including The Cow and Curd, a fried cheese operator, Fire n Chicken and the Blue Bunny ice cream truck.
Plan on coming out and celebrating Earth Day. Join the activities and see the plans for the conversion of the old landfill into a passive recreation park, which will include solar panels, gardens, walking and biking paths and open play areas.
** The fifth annual community “Walk 4 Family & Friends with Cancer” will be held on Saturday, April 20, at 8 a.m. at Connolly Park on Centennial Boulevard. Proceeds will benefit the Financial Assistance for Cancer Patients Program and Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania. Entry fee is $30 per person, $15 per child age 6 to 18 by April 18 or $30 the day of the event. For more information visit www.walk4family-friendswithcancer.org.
** The 9th annual Wine Tasting to benefit the Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation will be held on Thursday, April 25 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Virtua Barry Brown Education Building, 106 Carnie Boulevard in Voorhees. The event features over 250 of the most interesting fine wines and craft beers from around the world, accompanied by gourmet delicacies. Wine experts and winemakers are available to answer questions. Ticket donations are $50 per person in advance or $60 per person at the door. For reservations, call 784–0615 or visit www.arvfevents.org. The foundation installs Teen Centers in hospitals throughout the country to bring hope, excitement and entertainment to teens facing difficult conditions while receiving hospital treatment.