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Earth Week has something for everyone

by Deanne Puca

April 6, 2011 | WMU News

NASA Photo of Michigan from outer space.
Earth Week April 8-14
KALAMAZOO--Western Michigan University celebrates Earth Week with a series of largely student-sponsored programs April 8-14. All events are free and open to the public.

A variety of activities are planned including an open house at a cafe featuring locally grown food, a free market where people can share their services and unneeded items, an oxen plow event for a raspberry garden for the WMU community, and discussions on various sustainability initiatives including high-speed rail.

Highlights of Earth Week are listed below. For a complete list of events and the latest information, visit Students for a Sustainable Earth at

Campus Beet Open House
Friday, April 8, 5 to 8 p.m.
Bernhard Center Ballroom
Free food, entertainment and art exhibits will be featured at the student-led sustainable cafe. Read more about this event

Really, Really Free Market
Saturday, April 9, noon to 4 p.m.
Kiva Room, Faunce Student Services Building
Bring anything in useable condition you don't need and pick up items--clothes, tools, bikes--you want, free. You can also share skills and talents, such as providing haircuts or entertainment.

Ox Plow at the Gibbs House
Sunday, April 10, noon to 5 p.m.
Gibbs House, 4503 Parkview Ave.
Oxen from Tillers International will plow a raspberry patch for the WMU community. Food, live music, rope making and other sustainable workshops are featured.

Renewable Energy in the Great Lakes
Monday, April 11, 7 p.m.
1720 Chemistry Building
Lecture on renewable energy by Jennifer Alvarado, executive director of the Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association.

Midwest High Speed Rail Forum
Tuesday, April 12, 7 p.m.
1720 Chemistry Building
Presentation by Richard Harnish, executive director of the Midwest High Speed Rail Association.

Western Wednesday
Wednesday, April 13, noon to 3 p.m.
Campus Flagpoles
Discussion of water bottle usage and sustainability. Free water bottles and other giveaways.

Beyond Nuclear Energy
Wednesday, April 13, 7 p.m.
1720 Chemistry Building
Presentation by Kevin Kamps nuclear waste expert on nuclear issues facing the United States and Southwest Michigan, including nuclear recycling and the upcoming shipment of nuclear waste through the Great Lakes.

Earth Week sponsors include the WMU Office for Sustainability and registered student organizations Campus Beet, Student Environmental Conservation Organization, Students for a Sustainable Earth and Student Garden Organization.

For more information, contact Matthew Hollander at or (269) 387-0941.