City of Angels Greens It Up for Earth Day


A River Runs Through It. Kind of. Photo via Flickr by KLa4067

Long ago they paved over the parking lot of LA's sprawling metropolis in the desert. But besides the ubiquitous Prius, the Southland is greening its arid land with native greenery, urban gardening, green buildings, solarizing the port, and of course, there are all the eco-celebs. As one of the Green Apple Festival locations, the city has lots happening both this weekend and next, Wednesday the 22nd, and beyond, to celebrate Earth Day. It's a town that always loves a party and a theme.From the beach to the river, Valley to mountains, volunteer efforts combine hiking and fun, but the slots are filling fast so sign on at Green Apple Festival or find an activity posted at Go to Green LA within walking/biking distance:

The Village Gardeners will restore natural habitat on the Los Angeles River. Remove invasive plant species, plant natives, mulch the soil to create a model California garden. Also, identify and remove invasive plant life with North East Trees and native habitats at a wetland, including Arrow weed, Arroyo willow, California poppy, and rose.

Blue Planet Run is doing a 6K along the Los Angeles River in Griffith Park while cleaning up the shoreline with a pledge to reduce water consumption and be water-efficient. They'll hand out a handy fact sheet about the global water crisis.

Help Hollywood's Habitat for Humanity and Music for Relief build an energy-efficient house to cut some carbon footprint. They supply the hardhats, hammers, nails, and leaders. No experience necessary.


Meet at the ferris wheel at the Santa Monica Pier to clean the beach. Photo via flickr by Faris

Green the beach: Collect empty plastic bottles from your home, work, or the street in exchange for a free gift from Clear2Go on Saturday, April 18 at the Santa Monica Pier. Go early - the first 200 to turn in six or more empty plastic water bottles get a reusable, filtered water bottle with up to 700 uses.

Heal the Bay hosts the "Nothin' But Sand Beach Clean Up" on the Pacific Ocean at the Santa Monica Pier all weekend - and thereafter. The org is also hosting Earth Weekend at the Santa Monica Aquarium for the kids.

After all the hard work, there's a Roxy concert with Cary Brothers and Friends as a "thank you" to volunteers for a listen to "Blue Eyes" and other tunes from Garden State.

Wait, Wait, There's More!

Green Home Tours: Learn to make your home more earth-friendly at the Eco-Home in the Los Feliz neighborhood with demos on personal urban gardens and new technologies that turn any house green. See LA's first LEED-built housing, Rock Row, at its open house in Eagle Rock this and next Sunday afternoon for green building tips.

The 10th Annual Topanga Earth Day Festival. Music, organic fare, tech workshops, speakers, art, and face painting all weekend at the Community House Fair Grounds. Proceeds benefit local eco-orgs. These folks have walked the talk since they walked.

Tour the water reclamation plant in Whittier on Saturday. Bring the kids for puppet shows and eco-magic. Fifty plus exhibitors do gardening workshops and more. They have the spirit: "transcend earth day celebrations. Learning new tips and tricks about conservation does precious little good if they are not applied long after Earth Day 2009."


Hike and restore Malibu Creek. Photo via flickr by Patrick Woodward

Heal the Bay is sponsoring "Stream Creek Restoration" at Malibu Creek State Park in Calabasas. Clean-up the Santa Monica Mountain watershed, planting roots and leaf litter to filter pollutants and reduce erosion.

Universal Studios' Hollywood Eco-Fair on the studio lot Sunday gives rides on an electric bike, learn all about regenerated cotton and see how quickly cookies bake in a solar powered oven.

That's just this weekend! On Earth Day there's a ball, an awards, fruit tree giveaways, and the Los Angeles chapter of the National Conversation on Climate Action. Stay tuned.

More on greening Los Angeles:
Los Angeles Mayor Announces Big Solar Initiative
Los Angeles City Council Votes to Ban Plastic Shopping Bags
Los Angeles Doubles Fines for Water Wasters
O'Burger Offers First Organic Fast Food in Los Angeles

Tags: Activism | Conservation | Earth Day | Ecology | Los Angeles | Water Conservation

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