(Crystal A. Proxmire, April 22, 2017)
Farmington Hills, MI – Heritage Park was full of curious kids and adults for the annual Earth Day Celebration Saturday. Surrounded by nature and enjoying perfect weather, they enjoyed music, crafts, lessons and activities to help them be more ecologically aware.
Laura Shaw, Secretary at The Resource Recovery and Recycling Authority of Southwest Oakland County (RRRASOC) was there to answer recycling questions and hand out information about what can and cannot be recycled. Since she started with RRRASOC over 20 years ago, Shaw has seen the recycling rate increase significantly. The estimated rate in Michigan is 15.3%. The US average (in 2013) was 34.3%. RRRASOC recycles at 40.2%.
“We do a lot of education and programs, and we give tours of the facility,” Shaw said. “Recycling saves trash from going into the landfill. It creates resources for the community and it gives new life for recyclable objects.” It also creates jobs, she said. RRRASOC runs two shifts with a total of about 60 employees.
Other groups that came to share information included DTE Energy, Friends of the Rouge, Sustainable Farmington Hills, Oakland Audubon Society, Farmington Hills Beautification Committee, SOCWA, Consumers Energy, Farmington Community Library, Heaver Canoe & Nature Connection, and several others.
There were also hayrides, tours of the nature center, and a booth where kids could turn old t shirts into hats or other accessories.
Two year old Gayathri Madhuaraj came to the event with her parents Sravan and Ashwini. “We came because the weather is good and she can learn new things,” Sravan said. The little girl enjoyed playing with recycled yarn.
Older kids had fun making bird houses at the Home Depot tables.
There were also hayrides, tours of the nature center, and a booth where kids could turn old t shirts into hats or other accessories. Some were even brave enough to sample Diane Long’s Garlic Mustard Pesto, made from an invasive plant that grows throughout Heritage Park. “We’d like to be able to get rid of it, but until then we can eat it,” she said.
Learn more about the Heritage Park Nature Center at http://www.fhgov.com/Activities/Parks-Facilities/Nature-Center.aspx.
Learn more about events throughout Oakland County at http://oaklandcounty115.com/events/.