Celebrate Mother Earth on Friday in Taos and Questa


photo by Cisco Velarde

This Friday, April 22nd, is Earth Day. Stop what you’re doing, get outside, and celebrate our planet in whatever fashion you choose — shoes optional. If you’re feeling uninspired about what to do to appreciate our planet other than saying no to a plastic straw in your happy hour margarita, there are a couple events happening around town to put you in a conservationist  frame of mind.

Out in the scenic wilds of downtown Questa from 12-4pm there’s ¡Pollinate!– a Pop-up Education Fair and Picnic” led by the intrepid director of LEAP (Land, Experience and Art of Place) Claire Coté along with a score of volunteers. This will be their second Earth Day Celebration, and this year they’re moving it outside!

The whole event kicks off with a free picnic lunch open to the entire community. This has been LEAP’s M.O. for the past couple of their events. When I asked Claire why all the free food, the answer made my heart backflip: Environmental conservation doesn’t have to be pricey, elitist, or an in-the-know hobby. We all share the wild beauty and resources of this state just by living here. What better way to appreciate our treasure than by sitting down to a meal all together — no strings attached? Also, the food is always provided by local organizations, farms, and individuals.

Following the celebratory picnic lunch will be a ribbon cutting ceremony at 1:30, unveiling five large ¡Pollinate! banners depicting phenomenal pollinators. These banners were created in collaboration by 200 local students and are the results of LEAP’s facilitated workshops in the schools. The banners are destined to be installed at the five NCRTD Blue Bus stops in Questa and the surrounding communities of Lama, Cerro, and Arroyo Hondo.

Visitors can also experience an outdoor fair atmosphere with a parade of pollinators and interactive booths, face-painting and plant-a-seed activities. More information can be found at: www.leapsite.org or by calling 575-586-2362.

Looking for a more meditative experience? Join participants on the final mile of the 22nd Annual Global Peace Walk on the high road from Santa Fe to Taos. Everyone is invited to join the pilgrims at 9 a.m. at the Taos Visitors Center for an enjoyable amble to Kit Carson Park.

At 11:30 a.m. there will be a Cherry Tree Planting Ceremony to commemorate Taos as a Global Peace Zone. Following the ceremony, stay for an afternoon Spiritual Unity Circle with a free vegetarian lunch and music. For more information, call Reverend Yamato 505-239-9359, or find them on Facebook.

Whatever you choose, enjoy your day by celebrating what Taos does best: community.