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Earth Day Celebration Set For April 22

4/12/2013
 
Contact: Dr. Donna M. Simon
(304) 766-3363
dsimon@wvstateu.edu
 
 
April 12, 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
West Virginia State University Hosting Earth Day Celebration April 22

INSTITUTE, W.Va. – More than a dozen groups with an interest in the environment will be on the campus of West Virginia State University (WVSU) from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Monday, April 22, for an Earth Day celebration.

Participants will be able to visit booths and exhibits in and around the Wilson University Union staged to provide information about different aspects of the environment, and to also offer some interactive activities for visitors to enjoy such as a fly-fishing demonstration. All events are free and open to the public.

Also as part of the Earth Day celebration, Dr. Kevin Barry, WVSU assistant professor of biology, will lead a planting of native wildflowers and grasses beginning at 9 a.m. on the south side of Hamblin Hall. The planting will continue until all seedlings are planted.

Beginning at 11 a.m. a tree planting ceremony will take place between Fleming Hall and the Erickson Alumni Center.  As part of the ceremony, WVSU President Brian Hemphill will assist in the planting of a Northern Red Oak tree.

“The theme is conservation, sustainability and being friendly to the Earth,” said Dr. Steven Richards, program director of recreation and tourism studies at WVSU and one of the organizers of the Earth Day celebration. “We recognize that West Virginia State University is part of the community and this is important to us, that we find our environment worth protecting and preserving.”

Some of the exhibitors on display during Earth Day will come from groups and departments within the University. The Parks and Recreation Program as well as the Biology and Chemistry Departments will all be represented.

Other exhibitors will come from off campus and will feature a diversity of both environmental groups, and local groups with an interest in the outdoors.

Some of the local organizations participating that day will be the Coal River Group Inc., a citizen's group dedicated to conservation, recreation and sustainable economic development in the Coal River watershed district, and the Handlan Bird Club, the local chapter of the Brooks Bird Club. The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources will also be participating as will the Kanawha Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited.

Environmental groups on hand that day will include the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, the West Virginia Environmental Council, Energy Efficient West Virginia, Friends of Blackwater and the Surface Owners Rights Organization.

In addition, West Virginia 350, an environmental group that works to reverse climate change, will be on campus with a bicycle powered blender and will be offering free smoothies throughout the day.

Another group, New Vision Renewable Energy, will have a solar powered cooker on display.

 “I have children and grandchildren and I would like to leave the planet to them so they can enjoy it.” said Dr. Brenda Wilson, a WVSU education professor and another of the event’s organizers.

The Earth Day celebration is the largest of its type to be hosted at WVSU, Wilson said. Other events have been held in the past, but not to the size that organizers are planning this year.
           
West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multi-generational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service, and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
 
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