Walker River park plans early Earth Day | RecordCourier.com

Walker River park plans early Earth Day

by Amy Roby
Amy Roby

First observed on April 22, 1970, Earth Day was founded by U.S. Sen. Gaylord Nelson, D-Wis., as a way to expand knowledge and awareness of environmental concerns and to spur legislative reform regarding these issues within the U.S. For his legacy of environmental and educational advocacy, Nelson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1995, and he remained a dedicated advocate of environmental causes until his death in 2005.

Since its first observation nearly 50 years ago, the annual Earth Day event continues to inspire consideration of humankind’s impact on the planet and has expanded to include participation from more than 190 countries. Earth Day festivals often feature celebratory music and art; flower and tree plantings are also common.

On April 20 from 8 a.m.-4 p.m., park staff at the Walker River State Recreation Area host an all-day event to “Help Pollinators Thrive” in honor of Earth Day. The public is invited to join recreation area staff, along with representatives from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and volunteers from the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology, and Natural Resources at the University of Nevada-Reno for a “fun-filled day of bringing pollinator habitat to life.”

Activities are planned throughout the day to allow visitors freedom to attend one or more of the planned sessions:

Tree planting at the RV campground: The recreation area is in the finishing stages of constructing a new RV campground, and part of that effort includes planting trees to “transform the new campground into a shady respite.” Tree planting takes places throughout the day from 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

Pollinator garden installation: Park staff will lead discussions about pollinators and their habitats. Volunteers will demonstrate creative and design aspects of garden layouts that include mindfulness toward water conservation. Participants can “dig in” and play an active role in establishing these pollinator territories from 8 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

This session includes an exploration about how the Earth benefits from the relationship between pollinators and plants. Visitors can support the Western Monarch Butterfly population and help draw them to the area by planting wildflower seeds, native plants, and hedgerows, thereby providing attractive sources of nectar and pollen. This activity is planned from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

All ages are invited to participate in the area’s early Earth Day celebration. Participants are asked to wear appropriate clothing and work gloves and to bring plenty of water and a packed lunch.

The recreation area is located at 211 E. Walker Road in Yerington. There is a day use fee of $5 per vehicle, but all of the celebratory events on April 20 are free.

Questions can be directed to conservation staff specialists Samantha Essig or Zac Ormsby at 775-463-1609, or via email at wrsra@parks.nv.gov.

Amy Roby can be reached at ranchosroundup@hotmail.com.