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Earth Day Turns 40 in Nyack

By Marianne Olive

There is a big buzz around the village and throughout the tri state area about the week long 40th anniversary celebration of Earth Day here in our beloved Nyack. What an appropriate place to have the biggest earth friendly event ever in Nyack.

Earth Day promotes awareness and appreciation for the environment, which falls on April 22nd. The village will promote environmental reform and green initiatives,such as using energy efficiency, reducing or reusing disposable items, and will campaign to introduce recycling in Nyack’s commercial district. We hope to make Nyack’s EarthWeek celebration, a week of action, activities for all, with the intent to help change attitudes.

The following is a tentative agenda of the activities from April 17-25, 2010:

Saturday, April 17

An annual Brunch Celebrating Women of Leadership and Vision” will be held at the Nyack Community Center at 10am honoring

  1. Dr. Joan Gussow, a food producer,former university educator, a writer, and a Trustee in Piermont.
  2. Barbara Kohlhausen- CEO and President of Meals on Wheels
  3. Orial A Redd, Retired assistant to Westchester County Executive of Human Rights and a  civil rights activist
  4. Trudi Feiner, Community activist who helped organize Head Start and served on the board.

Sunday, April 18

  • Nyack Center will be the host location for the costume making for the “Parade of All Beings”(April 25th) Donate recycled fabric and organic cotton by contacting Marianne Olive
  • Lynda Fassa, Author of “Green Babies” and owner of Nyack’s only organic clothing company will hold a workshop on making rag dolls out of recycled and organic cotton. She will also assist in making parade costumes.
  • As part of Nyack Springfest, information about the Earth Week Celebration will be available at a booth outside of the Nyack Center (Thanks to the Chambeer of Commerce for it’s support in supplying the booth)

Monday, April 19

  • Leontine Temsky of the Historical Society, will conduct a walking tour of the historical commercial buildings of Nyack. the meeting place will be onthe corner of Broadway and Hudson  near the Post Office at 2 pm. The walking tour will be from 2 to 4pm.
  • Christina Dalystory teller and professional dancer, will narrate children’s stories and do an interactive dance with the children at the Nyack Center on Broadway from 10 to 11:30 am. all children all welcome.

Tuesday, April 20

  • Christina Dalywill narrate children’s stories and do an interactive dance with the children at the Nyack Library from 10 to 11:30 am. All children are welcome.

Wednesday, April 21

  • “Sparrow Dance Productions” will conduct a Dance-A-Thon at the Nyack Library from 6 to 10. All invited to participate for free. Contact Marianne Olive to register at

Thurdsay, April 22: EARTH DAY!

  • Please help restore our gardens and plant some early spring plantings. The Garden Club and the Blue Rock School will be working on this project.
  • Nyack merchants will do some cleaning of their storefronts and refreshing the paint and creating a lovely spring window display to welcome people into our village.
  • Paul Tappenden an active forager and mural artist will conduct a Wild Edibles Workshop from 5 to 6pm. Meet at Memorial Park near the garden.

Friday, April 23rd: William Shakespeare’s birthday!

  • We will honor Shakespeare with an earth friendly reading at the Nyack Library from 6 to 8 pm.

Saturday, April 24:

  • Keep Rockland Beautiful will host a ” Clean up Nyack” event at the Nyack Center on Broadway. Come between 9 and 10:30 to meet, greet and pick up supplies. Please volunteer an hour to help “Keep Nyack Beautiful”.
  • Paul Tappenden, an active forager, will conduct a Wild Edibles Workshop from 2 to 4pm. He will teach sustainable ways of selecting, gathering and preparing wild edible food. Meet him at Hook Mountain (Nyack State Park)
  • “Cycle for Recycle” a 20 mile bike ride will begin at the Runciple Spoon at 9 am and end at the Runciple Spoon. $1 a mile donations will go toward recycling in Nyack’s commercial district. Contact Marianne for more info.

Sunday, April 25: ALL DAY “BEE GREEN FAIR”

  • River Rowing will provide lessons on how to row using an erging station.
  • The “Parade of All Beings” will be at 11am. Participants will meet at River Space parking lot. the parade will proceed right on Artoppee Way and right on Franklin and right on Main St down to Broadway. then right on Broadway and left on Depew and into Memorial Park for the festivities.
  • The Amazing Grace Circus will be performing from 12 to 2 pm. They will teach kids how to juggle and how to do the hoola hoop and they will build a human pyramid.
  • Composting workshop: Janet Fenton “Master Gardener” and “Compost Queen” will give a workshop on composting at 12 and at 2pm.
  • Eric Becker, Director of Nature Center in Bushy Hill, Connecticut will give a workshop on wilderness survival training.
  • “Hands 2 Mouth” : Lisa Kaess will create a “PLANT A SEED” table where kids and adults can plant a seed for a planter, home garden, or H@Mcommunity garden in Rockland. They also plan to screen the short film, “Hands 2 Mouth: A Garden Grows”.
  • Sparrow Dance Productions will perform 6 choreographed dances and will have audience participation for some of them.
  • Booths related to recycling, environmental awareness, programs, products, green energy movements, gardening, honey bees, etc.  There will be many handmade crafts, art and wood work.
  • Games, contests and races of all kinds; wheel barrel races, potato sack races, double dutch contests, hula hoop contests, three legged races, jump rope, relay races, and apple dunking. These activities will be organized by the Nyack Middle School PTA and students.
  • A poetry and essay contest will be conducted in the schools and the best poem and essay about Earth Day or related subjects will win a prize and get  to read their poem in the gazebo at the “Bee Green Fair”.
  • Music and entertainment all afternoon with over 10 bands and performers including Nyack greats Frankie Diaz and Padro Capo and Dylan Kelehan. Keep your fingers crossed about getting Pete Seager to play this event.
  • Food booths will be provided by many local restaurants and merchants manning the booth, selling their organic and healthy foods.
  • There will be a soda maker making soda out of  fresh squeezed juice and seltzer.
  • Marina Marchese, author of “Honeybee” and owner of Red Bee Apiaries will do a workshop on beekeeping and do a book signing of her latest book “Honey Bee”.
  • Ron Breland  my beekeeping mentor and master organic gardener will do a workshop on organic beekeeping and has made strides in how to save the honey bees. He will discuss swarms and how to capture and rehive them.
  • Marianne Olive, a beekeeper and organic raised bed gardener will speak about my life being raised with honeybees and how I came to love them. She will also speak about the importance of back yard gardening and how she uses her organic produce and fresh herbs in Olive’s and soon to come “Sour Kraut”.
  • A number of local politicians and VIPs will attend including Connie Coker, Ellen Jaffee, Harriet Cornell, Nancy Lowe Hogan, Chris St Lawrence and Mayor Richard Kavesh to speak about what the village and the county is doing to support green initiatives in the coming year.
  • The day will end with a “Beekeepers Ball” . Come dressed in yur beekeeping whites or come as a queen bee, a drone or a worker bee etc. Taste  the tasty treats made with honey.

We look forward to a great success for our 1st Annual “Bee Green Fair”- Hope to see you there!

Donations for gifts and prizes are welcome. Please contact Marianne Olive for further information( booth space, music booking, workshops) at (845)358-8540 or email

Nyack People & Places, a weekly series that features photos and profiles of citizens and scenes near Nyack, NY, is sponsored by Sun River Health.

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