Earth Day Events 2023 – Part II

The theme for Earth Day 2023 is “Invest in Our Planet.” To celebrate Earth Day 2023, Alachua County, The City of Gainesville, UF, Santa Fe College, and other organizations have planned various events for our citizens to enjoy. Here is a list of some of the activities starting on or after April 21:

Alachua County Events

2nd Annual Cuscowilla Earth Day Celebration – April 22, from 9 a.m. to noon at the Cuscowilla Nature and Retreat Center (210 S.E. 134th Avenue, Micanopy). This is a free event. Join the Friends of Cuscowilla for a morning of planting and fun activities for the entire family, including birding walks, archery, disc golf, historical reenactments, arts and crafts, catch-and-release fishing, disc golf, music, tours, and a food truck.

2023 City Nature Challenge Alachua County – April 28 to May 1. Join Alachua County and hundreds of other cities worldwide for this friendly competition. Download the free iNaturalist app today and help Alachua County capture the most wildlife photos in our area during the challenge dates. This is also a great excuse to visit the County’s many local parks and preserves. Learn more about the challenge

University of Florida Events

Florida Museum of Natural History Spring plant sale - April 21 and 22, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the UF Cultural Plaza in front of the Florida Museum of Natural History (3215 Hull Road, Gainesville). The Earth Day weekend plant sale is one of the biggest of the year, featuring more than 100 species of Florida and pollinator-friendly plants. Plants will be available for purchase, with proceeds benefiting the Butterfly Rainforest exhibit.

Earth Day Jam Gainesville 2023! - April 22 and 23, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Participants meet at Turlington Hall (330 Newell Drive, University of Florida). Bring a trash bag and help clean up around campus. They don’t plan to leave a single piece of trash in their wake. 

Annual UF Health Campus Earth Day 2023 – April 21, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the UF Health Shands North Tower Atrium (1600 S.W. Archer Road, Gainesville). Learn about their sustainability efforts and successes at UF Shands Hospital. There will be giveaways and opportunities to win prizes. Dr. Lauren Berkow and Tedd Comerford host this event.

Miscellaneous Events

Earth Day 5k Park Run & Seed Exchange – April 22, at 7:30 a.m., Depot Park (874 S.E. 4th Street, Gainesville). This is a free event. Participants can walk, run, or jog the 5k. They’ll also be holding a seed exchange. Participants should bring any extra seed packets they’d like to share with others. Be sure to register online and bring the emailed barcode to the event. 

The Great American Cleanup & Volunteer Appreciation Day - April 22, from 9 a.m. to noon, at Massey Park Recreation Center (1001 N.W. 34th Street, Gainesville). There will be a thank-you party from noon to 1 p.m. Register to participate online. The online registration lets them know whether volunteers wish to plant trees, remove graffiti, garden, pull invasive plant species, or beautify the County. Keep Alachua County Beautiful will have sanitized supply kits available for pickup at Massey Park for cleanup sites throughout the County. Free t-shirts are available for volunteers while supplies last. There will be awards and prizes for volunteers at an after-party at Massey Park. 

6th Annual Earth Day Eco Fest - April 22, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the ECO teaching farm (17306 N.W. 112th Blvd, Alachua). This event costs $5. It includes family-friendly workshops where participants can learn how to make banana fiber baskets, natural dyes from backyard blooms, and kitchen scraps. Demonstrations will show the making of incense, essential oils, homemade paper, and cheese. In addition, there will be herb walks, talks on using biogas digesters, tips on soil improvement, growing herbs, and more.

Alachua County Farmers Market Earth Day Festival - April 22, from 8:30 a.m. to noon, at the Alachua County Farmers Market (5920 N.W. 13th Street, Gainesville). This is a free event. This family-friendly event includes arts and crafts, food truck vendors, earth-conscious non-profits and organizations, a Kids Corner with Earth Day activities like seed planting, and a market raffle of vendor gift certificates.

8th Annual Tree Fest - April 22, from noon to 11 p.m. at Swamp Head Brewery (3650 S.W. 42nd Avenue, Gainesville). This is a free event. Tree Fest celebrates the environment by raising money to plant trees with the Alachua Conservation Trust (ACT) in an event that features food trucks, family-friendly activities until 5 p.m., live music, and Swamp Head beer. Four trees will be planted for every beer purchased during Tree Fest and 20 trees for every Tree Fest t-shirt bought. The trees are one-year-old longleaf pines that will be planted by the ACT at the Little Orange Creek Preserve in Hawthorne, Florida.

EARTHDAYGNV 2023 - April 22, from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. at First Magnitude Brewing (1220 S.E. Veitch Street, Gainesville). $10 suggested donation. The event includes musical performances by Electric Kif, Dionysus, Rakhu, and Clay & the Picadillies. There will also be educational guest speakers, outreach tables, live art, craft vendors, food trucks, projection mapping, and more. Proceeds directly benefit our Florida Springs by way of the Florida Springs Council.

Earth Care Day - April 29, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Celebration United Methodist Church (9501 S.W. Archer Rd, Gainesville). This is a free event. Participants learn how to make their life and landscape more sustainable, feeding themselves and the planet while reducing chemical and plastic use. Topics include composting, waste reduction strategies, sustainable landscaping, DIY solar power, and gardening. Lunch will be available for a suggested donation of $10. After lunch, a presentation on starting a creation care ministry in your faith community will occur.

For more information, contact Erika Capin with the Alachua County Environmental Protection Department at 352-264-6800.

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