Loving the Earth

By Beacon Staff

Earth Day was first celebrated in 1970. Makes total sense, right? Hippies, vegetarianism, tree hugging, flower children.

Perhaps because of my own hippie parents, I was an environmentally conscious kid. When I was about 10, my neighborhood girlfriends and I started the Unicorn Club, which mainly consisted of us making pro-recycling posters, complete with heaps of colored glitter. We hung them around the neighborhood, without realizing that excessive glitter is antithetical to the concept of “reduce, reuse, recycle.” But we liked glitter and unicorns, and I was the club president, so that’s how it all went down.

These days, you can celebrate Earth Day in ways that appeal to your own interests, with or without glitter.

Food. Buy local when possible, sign up for a CSA or visit the farmers markets this summer. Drink local; many local breweries offer growlers and refills, reducing packaging. Think globally by browsing “Hungry Planet: What the World Eats” by Peter Menzel.

Fashion. Shop at consignment stores or have a clothing swap with friends, borrow fashion magazines instead of buying a disposable copy, unplug your hair dryer or choose earth-friendly beauty supplies.

Technology. Use your powers for good with apps like iRecycle (where to recycle everything from computers to paint), PaperKarma (unsubscribe from junk mail) or JouleBug (ways to save money and live a greener life).

Hands-on. Make something eco-friendly, like eggshell candles or a bicycle-powered charging station. Check out “Make” magazine and website for more ideas.

And for all sorts of interests, visit www.freecycle.org to give or receive stuff like building materials, electronics, household items and gardening supplies.

ImagineIF Libraries encourage exploration, fresh ideas and self-discovery. Learn more at www.imagineiflibraries.org.

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