ESU celebrates Earth Day on the quad

By Verones Padilla

SC Staff Writer

There was live musical guests that entertained the crowd, as students and faculty visited the different organizations that lined the quad in honor of Earth Day on Tuesday, April 22, 2014.

The event is held annually and organized by a student committee lead by President Kate Nelson.  Nelson says planning for Earth Day on the Quad starts as far back as October.

“We contact groups and organizations for promotional gifts and sponsorships, as well as invite community members to have a booth,” said Nelson.

The Monroe County Conservation District had a booth with information about their organization as well as a fun guessing game.  Pictures lined the table, and students were asked to guess which picture corresponded with the method of storm water management.

Darryl Speicher, of the conservation says information about storm water management is important for students and residents of this area because of how it affects us.

Traditionally rain water would sink into the ground.  With the development of buildings, sidewalks, roadways and parking lots water becomes “impervious,” meaning it doesn’t sink.  This creates runoff, and eventually flooding.

Creating rain gardens, vegetated swales, or putting in filtration systems in exciting storm water facilities are ways to bring the water back into the ground, “nature’s best filtration system,” said Speicher.

Campus groups were also doing their part.

The recreation center had a booth where they helped people make boomerangs out of recycled towel boxes.

Delta Chi, had an information table that looked into the effects smoking has on the environment.

The Art Association had cards for finger painting with information about themselves if anyone was interested in joining.

The Environmental Club also participated and had students building and painting small bird houses.

The Greek letter organizations, Alpha Sigma Tau and Sigma Pi were collecting soda tabs to donate to the Ronald McDonald Foundation.

The funds collected from recycling the tabs are used to pay for some of the costs of running the Ronald McDonald House, a home away from home for seriously ill children and their families.

Stony Acres had huge bags of garden soil and an assortment of annual flowers that students could pot themselves.

The children of The Mekeel Child Care Center were there having fun, picking from the brightly colored flowers and getting their hands dirty in the soil.

The Marine Science Club was presenting a report on “Oyster Castles.”

Luke Niemcozynski, a senior marine science major spoke to The Stroud Courier about the project.

“The castles are made of cement and do a couple of things for the ecosystem.  Oysters form a colony and procreate and the cement block becomes a three dimensional structure that reduces beach erosion,” said Niemocozynski.

Oyster reefs are dying.  An oyster castle is a type of artificial reef that can help oyster populations reduce the loss of the reefs that are important to marine ecosystems.

The Biology Club presented a study of ESU’s drinking water.  The water was found to be safe to drink.  The water of a local river was measured to be cleaner than they expected.

Faculty participated with a booth.  The Sustainability Commission collected old shoes for donation.

“The shoes are taken to a facility that ship them to third world and underdeveloped countries,” said Darlene Farris-LaBar, an associate professor of art and chair of the commission.

East Stroudsburg High School South also had a booth.  Dale Dippre, sophomore, and Gioanys Gonzalez, junior, co-chaired the committee that organized the trip this year to ESU.

“We have a pledge board where you can make an Earth Day promise to help maintain our environment,” said Dippre.

“We are also selling fun pens, that we made ourselves, to raise money for a garden our Green Team has started at the high school,” said Gonzalez.

The event’s finale was a fashion show organized by Dr. Seid’s event planning class.  Ashley Koren and Alyson Corduan worked together to make clothes from recycled materials.

They displayed a purse made from old bandanas and leg warmers fashioned out of sleeves of an old sweater.  Ten garments made of recycled materials hit the runway.

The event planners managed to bring in some fresh new talent: two of the children from The Mekeel Child Care Center.

Earth Day brought together various groups from all different parts of the university and community to honor one thing we all have in common: our home, planet earth.

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