Eco-Briefs: Earth Day on BeltLine, big recycling event and more

Earth Day on the Atlanta BeltLine (Photo courtesy of Atlanta BeltLine)
Earth Day on the Atlanta BeltLine (Photo courtesy of Atlanta BeltLine)

Earth Day on the Atlanta BeltLine is this Saturday, April 18. Atlanta BeltLine, Inc., the Atlanta BeltLine Partnership, Park Pride, Trees Atlanta, the Atlanta Community Tool Bank, and neighborhood partners have put together two projects for volunteers to choose from:removing bamboo from on the Eastside Trail Northern Extension or mulching on the Eastside Trail in the Old Fourth Ward. To see more upcoming Earth Day activities around Atlanta, check out our guide at this link.

Atlanta City Councilmember Carla Smith is bringing ecodepot, Atlanta’s largest recycling event, to the grand opening of the Center for Hard to Recycle Material (CHaRM) from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 18. The one-day event allows city residents divert thousands of pounds of household hazardous waste, and other hard to recycle items from area landfills by allowing experts to dispose of the items in a more environmentally-friendly way. Items that will be accepted Saturday include electronics, paint (oil/latex-based), pesticides, expired medications, batteries, tires, chemicals/pesticides, expired medications, fats/cooking oil/grease, Fluorescent bulbs (including CFL’s) , mattresses, plastic bags/wrap, Styrofoam and paper for shredding. Recycling some of the items requires paying a fee, including a $10 fee for mattresses, $10 fee for televisions and a $5 fee for toilets. For a full list of items that will be accepted visit http://livethrive.org/charm. The center will also take shoes, books, musical instruments, sports equipment, bikes and other items to give to local nonprofits for reuse.

The new Atlanta Botanical Garden, Gainesville has set its opening day for May 2. As an extension of the original garden in Midtown, the $21 million initial phase, developed on 168 acres donated in 2002 by Gainesville philanthropists Charles and Lessie Smithgall, will include a contemporary visitor center, 2,000-seat amphitheater, a train garden, and five acres of display gardens featuring nationally recognized plant collections. Future plans call for an interactive children’s garden, a native plant conservation nursery, and a student training and education center. “The opening of this garden marks a dream come true for so many – from our donors and supporters to our staff and the Smithgall family,” said Garden President & CEO Mary Pat Matheson. For more information, visit atlantabg.org/visit/Gainesville.

Imagine It! The Children’s Museum of Atlanta is hosting the Super Kids Save the World exhibit through May 3. Based on the British children’s book, George Saves the World by Lunchtime written by Jo Readman and illustrated by Ley Honor Roberts, the book was developed by the Eden Project, an educational charity located in England, which is dedicated to showing the importance of taking care of our world. George Saves the World by Lunchtime features an ordinary family, who in the course of their day save the world simply by making responsible choices. George, Flora and Grandpa demonstrate that by taking simple steps, families can become eco-friendly superheroes in their own communities. For more information, visit childrensmuseumatlanta.org.

The James M. Cox Foundation announced a $250,000 grant to Georgia Organics in support of the organization’s Farm to School (F2S) program. F2S is a nationwide movement that connects schools and local farms to serve healthy meals in school cafeterias, improve student nutrition and promote farm or gardening educational opportunities. Georgia Organics founded the state’s first F2S program in 2007 and has since implemented the program in 30 school districts. The organization currently has a three-year fundraising campaign that will deepen the existing F2S programs with an anticipated impact on 900,000 students statewide. The F2S program increases children’s exposure to fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as provides positive economic benefits. According to the Georgia Department of Economic Development, agribusiness is the state’s leading industry and contributes $71.1 billion to Georgia’s economy. However, much of what Georgia grows is sent out of state. The F2S program allows farmers to sell closer to home and introduce children to Georgia’s rich agricultural heritage.

The Atlanta Memorial Park Conservancy (AMPC) has received a $50,000 Legacy Grant from Park Pride, which will be matched with $50,000 of community raised funds, to officially kick off AMPC’s restoration efforts within the passive greenspace of Atlanta Memorial Park, commonly known as Memorial Park. The first project is a public/private partnership with the City of Atlanta’s Office of Park Design for park-way finding and signage. The second project is a Feasibility Study to explore sidewalks and trails within Memorial Park’s boundaries.

“Light the Night” is the theme of this year’s Rockin’ at the River Gala to benefit the Chattahoochee Nature Center. The event will be held May 9 at 7:30 pm with a gourmet dinner and live auction in Kingfisher Hall. Dessert and dance music performed by the Stephen Lee Band wrap up the evening at the Ben Brady Lakeside Pavilion, after guests have finished bidding on the silent auction in the Discovery Center.  Individual Patron Tickets are $250 and general tickets are $125 per person. Visit chattnaturecenter.org for more information.

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