With warmer weather finally on the horizon, two local institutions are among those in the Northwest suburbs celebrating Earth Week and Earth Day with activities to help people appreciate, enjoy and improve the natural environment.
Oakton Community College has various activities planned during Earth Week, April 19-25, at campuses at 7701 N. Lincoln Ave. in Skokie, and at 1600 E. Golf Road in Des Plaines. All activities are free and open to the public. A detailed schedule is at www.oakton.edu or contact Ken Schaefer, Oakton naturalist and groundskeeper, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Activities will include nature and bird walks along the Des Plaines River, a maple syrup demonstration, screenings of environmental documentaries, plucking invasive garlic mustard, and preparing the community garden for planting. There also will be chances to learn about the effects of algae, explore energy-reducing technologies, and find out how to conduct green fundraising.
"Oakton's celebration is designed to inspire and educate the community about how we can make every day Earth Day," said Ken Schaefer, Oakton naturalist and groundskeeper.
Meanwhile, the Barrington area group Citizen for Conservation is looking for new restoration volunteers to join the regulars from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday, April 26, to work on the continuing restoration of the group's preserves.
Earth Day volunteers will meet at CFC's headquarters, the white farmhouse with a silo, at 459 W. Highway 22, in Lake Barrington, across from Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital. Bring work gloves and dress for the weather. Special Earth Day refreshments will be served.
• Raking in rare prairie legume seeds at CFC's Grigsby and Flint Creek preserves. These legumes can only be successfully sown in the springtime.
• Planting woodland sedge plugs at CFC's Flint Creek South. The Penn sedge is one of the most important plants in the oak savannas and can only be restored by planting plugs. They must get into the ground early in the spring to survive droughts.
For information, call Citizens for Conservation at (847) 382-7283.