April 18, 2011

Earth Day activities planned at Student Center

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Find out just how easy it is to "go green" at Southern Illinois University Carbondale's Earth Day 2011 on Friday, April 22.

Visit the Student Center from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. for a variety of special events spotlighting Earth Day in an enjoyable, environmentally friendly way. The festivities are free and everyone is welcome.

Enjoy live music on the west patio as The Black Fortys play from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. In case of inclement weather, the concert will move inside to the Roman Room. During the Green Fair, visit the Roman Room and the Art Gallery for an assortment of Earth Day and “going green” materials and informational tables from the Student Center, Chartwells Dining, Saluki Spokes and others.

You can join in planting the second annual herb and vegetable gardens on the west patio beginning at 2 p.m. The Student Center chef uses produce from the gardens in food preparation and last year, the garden was such a success it is expanding to include planting in the window beds this year.

See for yourself how one man’s trash can be another man’s treasure at the “Trash to Treasure” event in the Craft Shop 3-5 p.m. You can make unique wind chimes from old forks and spoons, create a bag for books or other things from recycled banner materials or craft something from wood scraps. And you can always add something to the recycled ceramic sculpture on display at the shop, an ongoing project for several years. No pre-registration required, just walk in and enjoy the fun. Some Craft Shop workshops have a nominal cost.

Students will also be showing their recycling abilities at the second Reuse, Recycle, Reinvent Art Show as well. Using recycled or recyclable materials, students entered their videos, artwork and photos. The announcement of the show winners is set for 4 p.m. in the Roman Room with winning entries going on display in the University Bookstore windows and on the Student Center website.

Check out the video “Facing the Storm, The Story of the American Bison” at 5 p.m. in the Roman Room. Morris Library is providing the historical documentary that uses archival film and photographs, original footage, animated sequences and interviews, to tell the story of the American bison. Numbering around 30 million in the mid-1800s, the buffalo count dropped to less than 300 within a five-year time span.

Now saved from extinction, the massive animals still face challenges as land management, bureaucracy, legal battles and more affect them and the effort to restore herds to the Great Plains. The film examines the history of bison, their survival and the relationship between the animals and the Plains Indians. Everyone is welcome at the free presentation.

“We are excited to host our annual Earth Day event to once again provide the University community with opportunities to learn about how they can become more eco-friendly. We hope that everyone who attends learns something new and has an inspired awareness of and appreciation for the environment,” said Tena Bennett, the Student Center’s associate director facilities and operations.