The Sinkin EcoCentro building on North Main Avenue. Photo by Joan Vinson.
The Sinkin EcoCentro building on North Main Avenue. Photo by Joan Vinson.

Wednesday is Earth Day, a day that slips under the radar amid Fiesta’s drinking, partying, and littering. As the day comes to a close during events like A Night in Old San Antonio (NIOSA), the Battle of Flowers Parade, and King William Fair, beer cans, chicken bones, confetti streamers, and broken cascarón shells coat the festival grounds and pack curbsides.

Despite the drinking and littering that the 11-day celebration attracts, Fiesta San Antonio did do its part to counter its environmental effects by hosting an Earth Day celebration last Saturday at Woodlawn Lake with a 5K run, educational booths on saving energy, tree giveaways, recycling tips, a place for animal adoption, and even an “Angry Birds” themed game that addressed climate change.

Earth Day came into focus in 1970 when Wisconsin Sen. Gaylord Nelson, inspired by the student anti-war movement, figured he could fuse the emerging public consciousness with his own goal of adding environmental awareness to the political agenda. So, on April 22, 1970, as a result of Nelson’s efforts, people from coast-to-coast took to the streets to rally for a cleaner environment. As the millennium approached in 2000, another Earth Day campaign, this time with the help of the internet, was presented as a push for clean energy, focusing on global warming. Since then, organizations across the nation have come together to celebrate the ground on which we walk and the air in which we breathe. Listed below are some San Antonio community events coming up this week in recognition of Earth Day.

Sinkin EcoCentro “bEARTHday”

Sinkin EcoCentro (see top photo) is hosting its first birthday on Earth Day, or “Bearthday,” celebration at 1802 N. Main Ave. on Wednesday from 4-7 p.m. featuring tours, a plant sale, food, and more.

Earth Day Wildflower Hike

The San Antonio River Authority is hosting an Earth Day Wildflower Hike at both Confluence Park and Jackson Nature Park on Wednesday from 6-7 p.m. Staff members will guide attendees through the parks, pointing out native South Texas wildflowers while giving identification lessons.

Bluebonnets and Indian Paintbrush scatter a field near Johnson City Texas. Photo by Scott Ball.
Bluebonnets and Indian Paintbrush scatter across a field near Johnson City Texas. Photo by Scott Ball. Credit: Scott Ball / San Antonio Report

San Antonio Zoo

The San Antonio Zoo is not letting Earth Day pass without a celebration. Its annual Party for the Planet is a time for creating art out of natural materials and learning how to reduce your carbon footprint. The April 25th event is free with zoo admission.

Ride a Bike, Take the Bus

One of the most effective ways to reduce your carbon footprint is to avoid driving your car. This lovely spring weather makes riding a bike or B-Cycle even more appealing to avoid the traffic and get your daily dose of exercise all at once. In honor of Earth Day, you might also consider taking the bus to work or to the next Fiesta event. Last Saturday, VIA Metropolitan Transit received an Air Quality Stewardship Award by the Alamo Area Council of Government (AACOG) for its efforts in helping maintain demand-response transit services in rural areas that had lost state funding for such services. VIA partnered with the cities of New Braunfels, Schertz, Cibolo, Garden Ridge, and McQueeney to provide funding for the continuation of this service, which replaces 16,000 or more personal vehicle trips each year.

VIA Metropolitan Transit administration accepts an Air Quality Stewardship Award from the Alamo Area Council of Government. Courtesy photo.
VIA Metropolitan Transit administration accepts an Air Quality Stewardship Award from the Alamo Area Council of Government. Courtesy photo.

*Featured/top image: The Sinkin EcoCentro building on N. Main Avenue. Photo by Joan Vinson. 

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Joan Vinson

Former Rivard Report Assistant Editor Joan Vinson is a San Antonio native who graduated from The University of Texas with a bachelor's degree in journalism. She's a yoga fanatic and an adventurer at heart....