With over 45% of the island now preserved in perpetuity as open space and the introduction of the new Block Island Wind Farm this year, Block Island just keeps getting greener. So what better place can there be to celebrate Earth Day?
Come on out on Saturday, April 22, and you’ll find there’s a lot going on for the whole family. Activities begin at 9 a.m. at Clay Head Trail, where Ocean View Foundation’s Kim Gaffett will increase your bird appreciation, explaining bird banding and celebrating 50 years of collecting birding data to support scientific research and conservation.
Then at noon, you can join a March for Science at Nicholas Ball Park (near the Rebecca Statue at the end of Water Street.) Officially, marchers walk up to the Solviken Property on Corn Neck Road to reflect their support for science and the scientific community, but the less hardy are welcome to stop off anywhere along the route. (The Solviken property is an environmentally vulnerable tract of land between the Harbor Pond and the inset of Crescent Beach that was added to the island green space in 2012.)
When you reach the Solviken property around 1 pm, it’s Island Clean-Up time. Participants take collection bags and fill them up wherever they see the need, then return litter to the same location. As a thank you, you’ll receive a free Earth Day reusable tote bag from the Block Island Tourism Council.
After a few hours, you may work up an appetite, so drop by the Island Free Library for a Potluck for Science at 5 pm. Then at 6, after a bite at the Library, relax with a showing of the documentary “Planetary,” where filmmaker Guy Reid interviews everyone from NASA astronauts to philosophers, demonstrating how all life on the planet is inseparably interconnected.
Activities are free, with the Clean Up sponsored by a combination of the Committee for the Great Salt Pond, the Nature Conservancy, Block Island Conservancy, and the Block Island Tourism Council, and both islanders and visitors are welcome. If you’re not sure exactly where the activities take place, stop into the Visitor’s Center for a map.