It’s said that volunteering and serving others makes people happy. Working in the dirt also boosts happiness. On Earth Day, there’s a chance to get a double dose of happiness, as there are several opportunities to volunteer improving some of Clark County’s natural areas.
Earth Day, April 22, is Saturday this year. The holiday has been recognized worldwide since 1970 to promote concern for the environment.
Working outside in Clark County means dressing properly for the weather. With the kind of April it’s been, that could mean bringing a rain jacket, galoshes and sunglasses.
Here’s just some of the things you could do to help:
• Vancouver Land Bridge: Tend to landscaping needs on the Vancouver Land Bridge, an earth-covered pedestrian bridge arcing over state Highway 14 and part of the Confluence Project. Meet at 9 a.m. at the Old Apple Tree Park, at 112 Columbia Way. Tools and gloves will be provided, as well as a barbecue lunch afterwards.
Did You Know?
Two days after Earth Day is the beginning of National Volunteer Week, recognizing the contributions of volunteers. Last year, Clark County volunteers placed by Volunteer Connections contributed nearly 50,000 hours of service to more than 100 nonprofits. Volunteer Connections, a program of the Human Services Council, helps people find service opportunities that match their skills and interests.
RSVP for the event with Courtney Yilk, Confluence program manager, at 360-693-0123 or Courtney@confluenceproject.org.
• LeRoy Haagen Park: Clean up and pull invasive species at LeRoy Haagen Park, on Northeast Ninth Street west of Northeast 136th Avenue in east Vancouver. According to the city: “Teams will compete to see who can pull the largest amount of invasive plants, remove the most trash and spread the most mulch.” Prizes and lunch will follow the work party.
Volunteers under the age of 18 must bring a signed parental consent form.
• Salmon Creek Greenway: Volunteers can plant trees along the Salmon Creek Greenway with Clark Public Utilities’ StreamTeam as part of its 18th Annual Earth Day Fest. Participants must register in advance for this popular service project by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-992-8585. Planting is from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. near Klineline Pond. People can park at Chuck’s Produce in Salmon Creek and take a free shuttle to the service site. The Parks Foundation of Clark County is looking for someone to man the foundation’s booth from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Earth Day Fest. Those who are interested can contact Jennifer Hawk-Conright at 360-487-8373.
• Downtown Washougal: Help prepare Washougal’s newest downtown park at 2036 Main St. by pulling ivy and picking up trash. Bring work gloves, clippers and water to the work party, which is 1 to 4 p.m. Snacks will be provided. Contact the Washougal Parks Department at 360-835-2662, ext. 207.
• Battle Ground parks: The city of Battle Ground is holding its fifth annual Park Appreciation Day. Volunteers and city staff will work from 9 a.m. to noon beautifying Kiwanis Park at 422 S.W. Second Ave. and Florence Robison South Park at 1900 N.W. Ninth St. Volunteers will be picking up trash, raking, weeding, cleaning play equipment and spreading bark dust. Groups of six or more people are asked to pre-register by calling 360-342-5380.
• Whipple Creek: Maintain trails at Whipple Creek by cutting back encroaching vegetation and spreading gravel. Volunteers will meet in the large parking lot on Northwest 21st Avenue off Northwest 179th Street, near the Clark County Event Center at the Fairgrounds. Bring water and tools such as rakes, shovels, hand pruners, gloves and wheelbarrows. For more information, contact the Clark County Parks Volunteer Program coordinator, Karen Llewellyn, at 360-397-6118 ext. 1627 or at email@example.com. Anyone under the age of 18 needs to bring a signed parental consent form.