What Are Your Earth Day Plans?

Earth Day Celebrations 2012THE MITZVAH of repairing the world, tikkun olam, is on the forefront of the mind for many Jewish families. As increasing numbers of discussions take place regarding Earth conscience and sustainability issues, Jewish expressions pertaining to these ideas also increase.


So what is your family doing this April 22 for Earth Day?

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Earth Day was created by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson in the spring of 1970. By the winter of that same year, the holiday’s popularity had sparked the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency, a branch of government designed to protect the environment through regulation.

For families and communities around North America, Earth Day has since developed into a traditional rallying day for beautification, clean-up, and eco-awareness projects.

There are many events and projects scheduled this year for the 42nd Earth Day. The links below should give you some good ideas. For local events, check with your PJ Library program professional or with your local Jewish community.
What Is Your Family Doing for Earth Day 2012?ACROSS THE CONTINENT -- Want to find a short- or long-term Earth service project? The Jewish website J-Serve provides teens with the opportunity to fulfill the Jewish values of gemilut chasidim, acts of loving kindness, tzedakah, just and charitable giving, and tikkum olam. Find a J-Serve Project »

THROUGHOUT THE U.S. -- The Environmental Protection Agency and Smith Magazine have joined efforts to host an “expressay” contest, called “Six Words for the Planet.” Your family members can choose just six words that express their feelings about the Earth. Enter Your Six-Word Essays »

BOSTON -- Northeasterners may want to participate in the Boston Jewish Food Conference. Hosted at Hebrew College, the event will present ideas and discussions relating to the intersection of dietary laws, agriculture, and religion.

BALTIMORE -- The Jewish Museum of Maryland and the Downtown Baltimore JCC are hosting a “Post-Passover Party” that will celebrate the end of Passover, teach about the counting of the Omer, and put Jewish traditions in the context of Earth Day. Learn Party Details »

OTTAWA -- JET, aka Jewish Education through Torah, is hosting an Earth Day-themed event for its popular Girls Club. Mothers and daughters are invited to attend for discussions and craft activities relating to Judaism and the environment. See a Full Schedule of Events »

PALM BEACH, FL -- The Jewish Community Centre of Greater Palm Beaches is hosting an Earth Day “Family Picnic in the Park.” Get All the Event Details »

TIDEWATER, VA -- The Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater is encouraging area families to participate in a community-wide recycling program. Families bring certain electronics, plastic bags, eye glasses, hearing aids, pharmaceuticals, and other materials to be recycled in a safe and environmentally-conscious way. Visit the Event’s Facebook Page »

INDIANAPOLIS -- The JCC of Indianapolis is holding its inaugural Earth Day Celebration. Open for free to all, the event provides opportunities to Jewish families to build a solar-powered mini-car, create art with recycled materials, and go on a scavenger hunt in the woods.