Friday, April 22, 2011

Do Good With Mother Earth

You know you don't recycle as often as you should. You're guilty of driving everywhere, even if you could walk the block and a half to the store (it's easier to stow the groceries in the trunk than have to carry them home). You toss stuff in the trash before figuring out ways to reuse it, and regret it when you realize you could have donated or re-purposed what you deemed junk. But if there's one day of the year where you want to try to reduce, reuse, recycle, it's today, Earth Day.

Started as a grassroots movement back in 1970, it's still going strong 41 years later. You don't need to be a crunchy, granola-loving hippie, the stereotype that often correlates to Earth loving and Earth Day initiatives either. Here are 10 suggestions to show your support of Earth Day.
  1. Recycle your water bottles, sports drink bottles and energy drink cans.
  2. Keep your car in the garage and commute by bike, foot or public transportation. With gas prices soaring over $4 per gallon in some areas, it's almost painful to use the car regardless of what day it is.
  3. Find an Earth Day-themed running event. Even Easter weekend isn't going to stop race organizers from holding a 5K, 8K or 10K on Saturday morning. Chicago has the 5K for Earth Day, Boulder has the Earth Day 5K (but that's on May 1), the Cayman Islands has the Earth Day 5K, and Carlsbad, Calif. has the Earth Day 10K.
  4. Donate your old running shoes to an organization like Share Your Soles, which gives the shoes to those who need them. Or Nike takes old running shoes, grinds the soles and turns them into running tracks. You often can find drop boxes at your local running store. 
  5. Try reusing your old footwear for something else. Check out this article for some ideas on new uses for old footwear, especially flip flops.
  6. Instead of tossing that worn yoga mat in the trash, try cutting it up and reusing it around the house. Need some ideas? Read these 50 courtesy of Gaiam.
  7. Visit one of our country's national parks. You won't have to pay a fee to enter Yellowstone, Yosemite, Zion, Rocky Mountain, and more than 100 more during National Park Week. This deal's good through April 24, with more freebies on select days of the year.
  8. "Like" an Earth-friendly organization on Facebook. As part of their Earth Day initiative, Horny Toad will donate $1 to Heal the Bay for each new Facebook fan they get between April 21 and June 21.
  9. Ski an eco-friendly ski resort. Sure, there are only a handful of resorts still open for the season, but snow in the forecast means one last chance to take some turns before you have to wait until November. According to the Ski Area Citizens Coalition, Squaw Valley gets top props for 2010.
  10. Trade those plastic bottles for reusable ones from companies like Sigg, CamelBak and Nalgene. Wasn't Brian Williams just on a PSA sharing facts with the number of years it takes for a plastic bottle to decompose in a landfill?
 How are you staying active and showing your appreciation for Mother Earth?

Photo grabbed from DonkeyHotey at flickr.

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