Guided bike rides and wildlife displays are just two activities marking Earth Day 2004 in an expanded annual celebration hosted by Grassroots, a student organization at the University of Rochester.
The event, scheduled from noon to 6 p.m. on Friday, April 23, on the Wilson Commons Quad on the River Campus, is free and open to the public. In case of rain, activities will be held inside Wilson Commons.
Earth Day is celebrated internationally to educate and raise awareness of environmental concerns and issues. Grassroots is organizing events with support from the City of Rochester Bureau of Parks and Recreation and Rochester Gas and Electric Corp.
Rochester Gas and Electric is providing Earth Day educational displays featuring information on river otters and sturgeon, a live appearance of peregrine falcons, and other related environmental stewardship efforts. The Community Water Watch Program will provide information on water quality testing, while the City Bureau of Parks and Recreation will spotlight trails along the Genesee River.
Wild Wings and Braddock Bay Raptor Research will show live birds of prey and the Rochester Bicycling Club will offer guided bike rides along the Genesee River. The event also includes talks and demonstrations on the Seneca Park Zoo Society’s conservation efforts and on tree climbing by the City’s Division of Forestry.
Entertainment will be offered on two stages. Performers include Brazilian folk musician Marcelo Guimaraes, the jazz-performing Eugene Lee Group, hip-hop’s MC Scottrohedron and DJ Roots, and the rock group More Cowbell. There will also be Indian dancing from Vishal’s Bhangra Dance Group, Irish music from The Wild Geese, and folk music from the Sim Redmond Band.
In addition, the University’s anthropology department is holding its annual research conference on Earth Day. Exploring the theme of “Food, Community and Identity,” the conference includes a presentation of student research on the Rochester Public Market and a panel discussion on “Feeding Rochester.” The conference begins at 1:30 p.m. in the Welles-Brown Room in Rush Rhees Library and features a talk at 4:30 p.m. by Susan Andreatta, associate professor of anthropology at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, on “Urban Connections to Locally Grown Produce: Examples from North Carolina.”
Parking directions are available from and parking passes can be purchased at the Visitor Information Booth on Wilson Boulevard off Elmwood Avenue, with free shuttle service provided from the designated parking lot to the Earth Day event site.
For more information, call (585) 428-6770, e-mail RochesterEarthday@hotmail.com, or check the Grassroots Web site at www.sa.rochester.edu//grassroots.