Celebrate Earth Day at KSU at Stark

Julia Adkins

Kent State at Stark will host an Earth Day Celebration Sunday, April 27, from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Campus Center parking lot and at the pond/wetland area.  

The commemorative celebration of Earth Day at Stark is a family-friendly event meant to improve appreciation for earth’s natural resources and to inspire those to take responsibility when it comes to the environment.

The celebration will have environmental educational activities, entertainment, demonstrations, crafts and displays for those of all ages.  There will be a children’s area, which will include face painting, a mock fossil dig done by KSU Stark’s Geology student organization, crafts and a coloring contest.  

Foster Brown, an award-winning children’s music songwriter and singer, will also be performing at KSU Stark’s Earth Day Celebration. Cynthia Williams, the public relations coordinator for KSU Stark and one of the main coordinators for the event said that Brown has been to their event in previous years and has truly been a hit with the children.  “He does a lot of children’s songs and stories.  He kind of is a one-man-band, where he has about five or six instruments that he plays,” she said.

Jim Smolka, an entomologist, is also bringing his show, Bugs Unlimited, a traveling display of living and deceased insects from around the world, to the event at Stark.  Attendees will be able to learn the history of each of the insects and animals he brings and have their questions answered.

Among the different presentations Sunday, The Arbor Day Foundation will be there to present Stark’s campus as a 2013 Tree Campus USA University.  “It goes to campuses across the nation who have formally dedicated themselves to management and environmental stewardship,” Williams said.  

“With 200 acres, we have a lot of trees,” she said. “But we do a lot to make sure our trees are healthy and make sure that they’re environmentally safe for the birds that are there, the bugs that live and thrive around them.”

Walter Wagor, dean of Kent State Stark, will also be there with members of the campus grounds crew to participate in a tree planting ceremony.  They will be planting a new tree near the event as another example of the campus’ dedication and commitment to protecting and preserving the environment.  

Biology Professor Robert Hamilton will be giving a guided tour of the pond and wetland area on campus, which was officially named a Certified Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation.  “I start out by getting people to just think about nature, the nature of organisms,” Hamilton said.  

Hamilton said his tours started four years ago, and have grown to be so popular at Stark’s Earth Day Celebration that they had to take it from multiple 15 minute walks to one big 45 minute walk with a large group.  

Hamilton says that attending KSU Stark’s Earth Day Celebration is putting a philosophy into action.  

“This is the old concept of voting with your feet,” Hamilton said.  “If you say you believe in conservation, this is an opportunity to actually come out and support a conservation event. And it’s opportunity to socialize with likeminded individuals.”

To find out more about the Earth Day Celebration at Stark, visit: http://www.stark.kent.edu/about/events/earthday/index.cfm.

Contact Julia Adkins at [email protected].