Can't decide what to do this Earth Day? Let us help!

By Jordan Carson

1) Recycled Art Exhibit

·Where: Earth Day Alliance, SLO

·When: Throughout the month of April

·Cost: Free

Throughout the month of April the Earth Day Alliance will be showcasing recycled and re-purposed works of art by several local artists including: Christian Von Evers, Carol Johnson, Dave ‘Maddog’ Norton and Janelle Younger.

2) 6th Annual Conservation Celebration

·Where: Charles Paddock Zoo, Atascadero

·When: April 18th

·Cost: Zoo Admission

Come hang out with lions, tigers, bears, and the Planet! The Charles Paddock Zoo’s 6th Annual Party for the Planet is a wonderful family oriented event filled with animal charades, rain barrel painting, DIY upcycled/recycled party decorations, and don’t forget to bring an old t-shirt to turn into your very own “Zooper Hero” costume. Bring your small electronics to recycle then get your face painted and sing a little diddy at kid’s karaoke.

3) Nipomo Native Garden

·Where: Nipomo Regional Park

·When: Daily during daylight hours

·Cost: Free

This 12 acre native botanical garden features native plant communities endemic to the Nipomo Mesa Guadalupe Dunes complex and provides opportunities for education, conservation, restoration, research and recreation. The garden is a community-based, non-profit organization undertaking the restoration of this area of the Nipomo Regional Park to native habitat. Don’t just come for Earth Day, the first Saturday of every month is gardening day! Bring your gloves, hat, weeding tool, shovel and sun protection for a day rejuvenating nature.

4) Stewardship Travel Adventures

·Where: Highway 1 Discovery Route

·When: Daily

·Cost: Varies

Whether you are traveling down or up the coast, there are opportunities for Earth Day activities all along beautiful Highway 1 Discovery Route. Stop in San Simeon at the Coastal Discovery Center on Saturdays to participate in Plankton Monitoring where you’ll get to capture your very own plankton sample and study it under a microscope, measure pH, salinity and temperature, and more! This interactive activity helps the California Department of Public Health as part of the CDPH Marine Monitoring Program. Travel to Cayucos for Wildlife Kayaking and Clean-up Tours or grab a free Beach Stewardship Cleanup Kit & Tote Bag to use as you walk along the sandy shores. No matter where you are along Highway 1 there is always opportunity for stewardship and, perhaps this Earth Day you can donate a couple hours of your time to keeping the Central Coast looking like its beautiful self.

5) Farmers Markets

·Where: All over SLO County

·When: Every day in various cities

·Cost: Free

Support local farmers and merchants by attending one of the many Farmers Markets around our beautiful and bountiful county. Sunday through Saturday, markets pop up in nearly every city in SLO County. No matter what your weekly schedule you’ll be able to find a Farmer’s Market to fit your busy life; go big on Thursday night’s at SLO’s famous Farmer’s Market or opt for a smaller crowd at any of the other local market’s happening throughout the week from Paso to Nipomo. Check out a full list here.

6) Earth Day @ San Simeon State Park

·Where: Coastal Discovery Center, San Simeon State Park

·When: Saturday April 18th 9am-3pm

·Cost: Free

Participate in the quintessential Earth Day activity by planting a tree and landscaping an outdoor area in preparation for a new exhibit on shore whaling at the Coastal Discovery Center.

7) Earth Day Fair and Music Fest

·Where: El Chorro Regional Park & SLO Botanical Garden

·When: Sunday April 19th 10am-5pm

·Cost: Free

The Earth Day Alliance is throwing an Earth Day Fair complete with live music from 2 stages, Dairy Creek Zero Waste Park Tours, Clean Energy Zone, Kid’s Korner, Eco Marketplace, Health & Well-being Center, Food Court, Beer & Wine and SLO and Botanical Garden Tours.

8) Earth Day Food & Wine

·Where: Castoro Cellars

·When: Main Event, Saturday April 18th

·Cost: $50-$115

Looking for something a bit more eventful? Hop over to Earth Day Food & Wine’s main event at Castoro Cellars! Enjoy top quality food and wine in a relaxing environment. This event aims to celebrate all of the amazing farmers, chefs, and winemakers working to further the sustainable food movement and bring together people who want to learn more about it. Not only is it sure to satisfy your taste buds, but this event only generates less than 2 pounds of trash! From composting and recycling to powering the stage using the sun, Earth Day Food and Wine will leave no trace that it was ever there but the memories and knowledge you gain will remain with you forever.

9) Earth Day Recovery Yoga & Organic Brunch

·Where: Castoro Cellars

·When: Sunday April 19th 8:45 – 11am

·Cost: $30 or $25 for Club Members

Become one with Earth Day as you head back over to Castoro for a morning of relaxation and yoga. This all-levels class will be taught by in house Yogi Lauren Harvey with an organic brunch provided by Chef Jeffry Weisinger to follow.

10) Gray Whale Migration

·Where: W.R. Hearst State Beach

·When: Entire month of April, all day

·Cost: Free

From January-July Gray Whales make the long trek from their winter birthing and mating grounds in Mexico, to their summer feeding grounds in the Arctic. Come see these gray whales migrate right past the Central Coast just 2-3 miles off shore! What better way to celebrate Earth Day than to see nature in action.

So, get out there this Earth Day and see what nature has to offer in San Luis Obispo County! Whether you desire food & wine or viewing our planet's largest creatures, this Earth Day should be spent outside, enjoying them.