As is tradition, on April 17th Sandia had its annual Earth Day fair. The fair, organized by science teacher Jason Roback, hosts a number of clubs and organizations. Students have the opportunity to learn about the environment and how to help it, talk to people from local organizations dedicated to the environment and ecosystem, and even pet or hold many different kinds of animals. Despite the rain the morning of the fair, all the booths still went strong all day and the fair was very crowded as students from all classes came to have a look.
The Earth Day fair that has been going on for many years is organized by Jason Roback, who teaches Biology and AP Environmental Science here at Sandia. Roback brought something new to the table this year, though- a large sculpture of a net holding 1,001 plastic water bottles, next to a sign that reads “Sandia throws away 2,500 single-use plastic bottles EVERY WEEK. These 1,001 bottles represent just 2 days. Plastic bottles last 450 years in the environment, where they leach chemicals in the soil & water, and can choke wildlife.” Roback stated that the sculpture was intended to give students an incentive to use filtered water, and that “I thought it would be neat… It makes more of an impact if you can see it.”
The booths at the Earth Day fair varied from school clubs to environmental organizations. There were clubs and organizations such as Gardening Club and Environmental Club, BEMP, Sierra Club, UNM Landscape Architecture, the Native Plant Society of New Mexico, Bear Fair, Institute for Applied Ecology and more. There were also individuals with booths, such as a woman explaining the benefits of owning your own backyard chickens, and a booth called Entomophagy providing crickets to eat and explaining the benefits of utilizing crickets as food.
Every booth served a different purpose- some were selling things, such as Gardening Club and Environmental Club (which sold small plants and snow cones, respectively). Some were there to advertise themselves or bring awareness, and some to support a cause. The Bosque Ecosystem Monitoring Program, or BEMP, explained that they have been monitoring the bosque for over 20 years, looking at animals, trees and flowers, and handling ecosystem management. Their booth intended to inform passerby. Many booths were of similar nature, such as Sierra Club which explained that they are an environmental and activism organization that battles for climate change and educates people. Every booth contributed to an exciting and informational experience for attendees.
Even though the Earth Day fair didn’t actually happen on Earth Day this year (Which is on 22nd of April), the fair was a success, with a lot of interaction from the students who attended and publicity for all the booths that were there.