Join the City of Bellingham in celebrating Earth Day (April 22) with activities during the week of April 16-23, 2023. The City is hosting free activities for all ages to honor our planet, including a volunteer work party, recycled art projects, a photo contest, nature-themed Children’s Storytimes, book lists, self-guided tours and more. The events are listed below; more details can be found on the City’s website at cob.org/earthday2023.
Volunteer to restore habitat in Bellingham
The City is hosting a volunteer work party in partnership with Western Washington University LEAD, Whatcom Million Trees Project and Washington Trails Association on Saturday, April 22 from 9 a.m. to noon to restore habitat in the Sehome Arboretum. Volunteers will plant native plants, remove invasive ones and spread mulch. All ages and abilities are welcome, and no previous volunteer experience is necessary. Tools, gloves and snacks are provided, as well as free coffee and pizza donated by Woods Coffee and Papa John’s. Please register in advance for this free event. Spots are limited!
Participate in art projects that honor the planet
The Whatcom Museum is offering two in-person art projects. The first is recycled art inspired by Frances Ferdinands, a Sri Lankan-born Canadian artist whose art expresses her concerns for social and environmental topics. Drop in to the FIG art studio between April 19-23 to use a variety of recycled materials to tell your own story through collage art inspired by Ferdinands. Then on April 22, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., stop by the Lightcatcher Art Studio to screen print your own reusable bag in celebration of Earth Day. Use markers to embellish the bag with your own designs. These activities are included with Museum admission or free for members.
Submit climate action photos in a photo competition
Amateur and professional photographers of all ages can participate in the 18th annual Essence of Bellingham Photo Competition sponsored by the City of Bellingham and Whatcom Museum. Photo entries capture the “essence” of living, working, or playing in Bellingham. Several awards are given, including a Climate Action award honoring images that show actions our community is taking to address climate change and its impacts. Entries are due by Monday, May 1, 2023. Find complete competition details at cob.org/eob.
Connect with nature through stories
Bellingham Public Library will present nature themed Storytimes on Monday, April 17, Wednesday, April 19 and Thursday, April 20 for children ages birth to five years. Enjoy stories, songs and movements that inspire a connection with nature. Storytimes meet in person at the Central Library and are free of charge. Visit the Bellingham Public Library’s website to find a full list of Storytimes. For additional children’s book recommendations see the Library’s Earth Day book list for kids. Adults can enjoy books from the Library’s climate action themed book list, titled This World We Call Home.
Additionally, community members can get outside and explore nature by checking out a state park backpack through the Library. The Library offers backpacks equipped with a Discover Pass, binoculars, field guides and a map. The Discover Pass allows free parking at Washington State Parks.
Make a personal commitment to reduce environmental impact
The City offers three pledges for community members who want to reduce their environmental impact, including pledges to take climate action, conserve outdoor water use and pick up dog poop to keep Bellingham’s waterways clean. Pledge participants have the option to receive free materials that will help them begin reducing their environmental impact.
Take a self-guided Stormwater Discovery Tour
Discover where rainwater goes on Bellingham’s Stormwater Discovery Tours. Explore urban and parkland areas while learning how the City keeps the water clean, filters out pollutants and prevents flooding. There are five self-guided tour sites in Bellingham. Visit stormwater.cob.org to start exploring with a mobile-friendly guide that provides maps, historical photos and underground drawings.