With Earth Day approaching, now is a good time to chip in to help make the environment a cleaner place.
Blaine is hosting its annual Earth Day community cleanup event Saturday, April 20 from 10 a.m. to noon at Kane Meadows Park, 2946 Rice Creek Parkway.
Bags, gloves and refreshments are provided. Those who volunteer will receive a certificate of appreciation.
The Natural Resources Conservation Board, Friends of Open Space and the city of Blaine are hosting this community cleanup activity. Conservation board chairperson Dottie McKinley and her daughter Dina will be doing a tree planting and pruning demonstration.
Another project that volunteers will work on, besides picking up trash, is to clear some overgrown willows, according to Tom Godfrey, program supervisor for the Blaine Parks and Recreation Department.
Dottie said the developer of the homes near Kane Meadows Park had put in a nice viewing dock on a pond where people could see wildfowl. Willows have blocked the view of this dock, however, so they hope to get enough volunteers to remove these willows and restore the view.
Kane Meadows Park is property that Blaine had purchased under its open space preservation program that Blaine voters approved in 2000.
One of the projects that Natural Resources Conservation Board would like to do is clean up buckthorn from the open space property. There will be a display about buckthorn at Blaine’s Earth Day event, so neighbors of Kane Meadows Park can help remove it when they see it, Dottie said. The problem with buckthorn is it can keep coming back, so it takes a persistent clearing effort, she said.
If there is enough time, Dottie would like to tell people about the adopt an open space, park, storm water pond or trail programs the city has.
Dottie said Godfrey has done a good job promoting this event and attendance has been really good the last couple of years. There were about 80 volunteers at Hidden Ponds Park last year.
“It’s important to get the neighborhood involved in their open space or park and take responsibility for the care of it,” Dottie said. “Our motto is Earth Day is every day.”
If you have additional questions about the Earth Day community event, call Godfrey at 763-717-2723.
Eric Hagen is at firstname.lastname@example.org