Within the next five years, the goal of Earth Day organization is to plant 7.8 billion trees. It is estimated the planet is losing more than 15 billion trees each year.
These facts and more were discussed at Earth Day celebrated Friday, April 22, at the Levinson LaBrosse Educational Center on SR 13 South in Syracuse. There was a nice gathering of people ranging in age from 1 to 91. As participants arrived, they were able to view scores of posters made by students in the Wawasee Community School Corporation, grades two to eight.
While waiting for the program, the children and adults made wildflower seed bombs that could be taken home and thrown in a ditch or planted in a garden. The theme for this year’s Earth Day was “Trees for the Earth.”Board member Pam Schumm made introductions and then gave a brief program interacting with the participants about how trees are like money, band-aids, an umbrella, a lung and even ice. Winners of the poster contest were named and their posters pointed out.
Grades two to three — Lydia Stookey, Keira Lortie, Rylin VanLaningham, Rachel Studebaker
Grades six to eight – Avery Hurley, Andrea Mickley, Valerie Haessig and the team of Hancock and Whitaker
At the conclusion of the program, participants were able to walk the trails, complete a scavenger hunt, plant tree seedlings or make more seed bombs. According to the youngsters, the best find of the day was a partial goose egg.
The 50 tree seedlings (red bud, red oak, sugar maple, dogwood and Norway spruce) will be grown in a temporary tree lot and used to repopulate the areas where invasive honeysuckle trees have been removed. By the time the youngsters attending the celebration are adults, these new trees will provide them with shelter, inspiration and beauty in the woods.
The hope is they come back year after year to check on their trees and help take care of Mother Earth.