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Earth Day '98: April 22

Earth Day Is Heading to the Neighborhoods

Santa Monica's Fest Is but One Example of How the Celebration Has Evolved Into a Community-Based Phenom

April 16, 1998|CONNIE KOENENN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Earth Day tip: Take the family to an environmental event.

Earth Day '98, on Wednesday, will offer a time to reflect on ways to live sustainably. Having trouble thinking of ideas? Just check out the weekend calendar.

The Earth Day kickoff schedule is abloom with restorations, cleanups, marathons, Earth fests, educational booths, plantings and parades.

It's a growing grass-roots movement, says Lillian Kawasaki, environmental affairs manager for the city of Los Angeles. "Sometimes people get the notion that Earth Day has disappeared since the 20th anniversary celebration in 1990," she says, "because we don't see large-scale mass media events taking over the city.

"What has evolved, I am heartened to say, is a growth of neighborhood activities. There's a full range of Earth Day projects all month long, from beach cleanups to tree plantings."

One of the most festive events is Santa Monica's 7-year-old Celebration of Our Community Roots, which combines cultural and environmental events in a Saturday happening in Clover Park at 2600 Ocean Park.

"It's very big--we expect 20,000 people to show up," she said. "We'll have two stages going all day, strolling performers, workshops--both ecological and artistic, community booths. It will be a whole variety of experiences," says Maria Luisa de Herrera, the city's cultural affairs administrator.

The "Home Zone" area will include demonstrations and information about smart gardens, sustainability, resource consumption and other at-home environmental practices.

Hours are 11 a.m. to dusk. For more information: (310) 458-8350.

Other Saturday events include:

* Earth Day at Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Activities include a beach cleanup and exploration of a salt marsh. (310) 548-7562, Ext. 5026.

* Loyola Marymount University Run for the Bay 5K / 10K run: 8:30 a.m., campus at Loyola Blvd. and West 80th Street: (310) 338-7596.

* Eco-Maya Festival IV, with music, dance, art and education. Barnsdall Art Park, 4800 Hollywood Blvd., 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (213) 960-7879.

* California Poppy Festival / Earth Day Celebration, a weekend family environmental fair. Lancaster Park, 43011 N. 10th St. West, Lancaster. (805) 723-6077.

* International Friendship Festival with hundreds of vendors and environmental exhibits, christening the new Special Events Park at the Queen Mary in Long Beach, noon-10 p.m. (310) 285-1497.

A full schedule of Earth Day events is available on the Los Angeles Environmental Affairs Web site: http://www.ci.la.ca.us/dept/EAD or by calling (800) 439-4666 (within L.A. city limits) or (213) 580-1052.

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