My apologies for the late post this week. I usually have a list of under $5 family activities up by Monday morning at the latest. This weekend was moving day for us, which is infinitely more complicated with a toddler! Monita now has her own room, in theory, though it seems she’s still in bed with us for now. Internet is now up and running at the new place, so without further adieu… here’s the line-up of free and cheap things to entertain you this weekend for Earth Day. If you’re looking for an Earth Day event, there are many to choose from:
Earth Day Vancouver, A free family festival
When: Saturday, April 20, 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
Where: Everett Crowley Park near Champlain Heights Community Centre, 3350 Maquinna Dr., Vancouver, BC (entrance off Kerr Rd., near E. 64 th Ave.) (map)
What: Enjoy the outdoors in Everett Crowley Park for Earth Day with lots of family-friendly activities and chances to learn about our connection with the local plant and animal life here in Vancouver. Some of the featured displays include bird handling and care with Greyhaven Exotic Bird Sanctuary, snakes and lizards with the Reptile Conservation, Biodiversity with the Beaty Museum, backyard farming with City Farm Boy and several animal rescue associations. Binkie the Clown will be on hand to face-paint, twist balloons and entertain. Lindsey Long Legs, a stilt-walker with a variety of bird-themed costumes, will also be strutting about. The River District tent will have a planting activity for families too. For more information call 604-431-5594 or see the Earth Day 2013 website for more details.
If you are keen to head to Everett Crowley Park to enjoy the wildlife without the crowds, there’s also a free birdwatching tour happening on Sunday at 8:30 am. Meet at the Kerr street parking lot at 8:30 a.m. for Birdwatching with Margo. Wear all weather clothing and sturdy footwear. Free with membership but you need to pre-register and space is limited. Call 604-718-6575 to register for workshop 45401.201CP.
Earth Day March/Parade and Entertainment on the Drive
Where: Parade starts at Commercial Dr. and Broadway Ave. at 11:00 am, then continues N down Commercial Dr. to Grandview Park, where entertainment and speakers continue the celebration at around 11:30 am.
What: The whole family can take part in this parade down Commercial Drive and really get into the spirit of Earth Day and preventing climate change. An annual event, it’s touted as “the most fun you ever had saving the planet”, and includes both speakers and live music. You can check out the line-up for presentations and even watch a video of the parade last year to see what it’s all about. I haven’t noticed any kid-specific activities for this one, but if you’re looking for a good community vibe, I’m sure you’ll find it. The parade is organized by the Windermere High School’s Youth for Climate Justice Now.
Earth Day Workshop for families
Where: Killarney Community Centre, 6260 Killarney St. (and E. 45 th Ave.), Vancouver, BC map
What: If you’re looking for an event that’s informative and perhaps a bit more low-key, you can join an interactive workshop for families hosted by the Killarney Youth Council Green Team. Refreshments and an environmental activity are included. You’ll learn about the simple ways you can help solve important environmental issues which affect our community. Head to room 203 in the Killarney Community Centre. Free.
Family EarthFest at Burnaby Lake
Where: Burnaby Lake Rowing Pavilion, 6871 Roberts Street, Burnaby (map)
What: Hosted by the Wildlife Rescue Association, EarthFest is a nice way to take in a little nature with a guided walk or a canoe ride or complete an activity as a family. You can build a bird box or bee box together or try your hand at other arts and crafts activities. We took Monita for a walk around Burnaby Lake during spring break and it was not only easy to get to, but perfect for a toddler-paced walk. The trails are wide, clear and have lots to look at, including — everyone’s favourite — ducks. There are obviously lots of water hazards (it is a lake after all), so you can’t let your attention stray from your tot, but they can manage the path even on shaky legs.
Earth Day with the Imagineerium (North Van)
When: Saturday April 20th, 11:00 am – 2:00 pm
Where: Bridgeman Park, North Vancouver (near Hwy 1 and Keith Rd., map)
What: The Imagineerium will be celebrating Earth Day with lots of crafts and chances for you kid to explore their creative side. You can play recycled golf, “imagineer” a miniature compost bin or create beads from paper to make Earth Day jewelry. Everything will be done with eco-friendly materials, so it’s a good way for crafty kids to be sensitive to the Earth and do something hands-on. Admission is by donation. Call 604-356-3442 for more details.
Earth Day Festival in Richmond – Updated!
My apologies for the earlier post, in case any of you from Richmond are reading this. The last link was mistakenly from Richmond, Virginia! I can only blame the chaos of boxes in my house for the mix-up. Sorry! Here’s the real event in Richmond… ahem, BC.
When: Sunday, April 21, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
Where: Garden City Community Park, 6620 Garden City Road, Richmond BC
What: Richmond, BC’s Earth Day event is suggested for kids 6 and older, but it sounds like a good community builder that would promote connecting with the green spaces around us. If you have a kid under 5, perhaps he or she could benefit as an observer from the safety of a carrier or plenty of adult assistance. Volunteers are going to clean up Garden City Community Park, then celebrate with a drum circle and a volunteer recognition lunch with Mayor Malcolm Brodie. For more information on this celebration or to organize your own clean-up event, please call 604-244-1250 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’re curious about Earth Day activities happening all over BC, you can see a full list of events province-wide.
Pottery Barn Kids on South Granville is also offering free packets of seeds to kids (while supplies last) from April 20 – 22 in their store. Click here for more info.