Celebrating Earth Day at Darby


By Christine Bryant
Staff Writer

Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park will mark Earth Day with several opportunities for families to learn about the planet they call home.

The celebration will kick off April 22 at 1 p.m. with a program at the Nature Center called “Cruddy Creek” in which visitors will discover why rivers and creeks get polluted and how they can help prevent this from occurring.

“In the Nature Center, we have a living steam, and we put a bunch of items in it so you can see what happens if you do that in nature,” said Deb Ruppersburg, a senior naturalist at the park.

Afterward, a second program kicks off at 2:30 p.m. in which visitors can learn about the need to preserve the planet and the importance of plants. Guests are invited to bring a clean 2-liter bottle to make a flower pot.

“They’ll learn how to recycle and make a planter where they can grow a plant in their house,” Ruppersburg said. “A high school volunteer will be doing this program, and she’s put a lot of research into it.”

Throughout both programs, COSI will be on hand to present demonstrations on acid rain and rainwater, composting, and pollination and bees.

Ruppersburg said visitors to the park also can volunteer to help pull garlic mustard.

“It’s an invasive plant that is choking out our native plants in the forest,” she said. “If someone wants to help with that, we’ll show them what it looks like, give them a bag and they can go for it.”

The park’s Earth Day activities are free, are open to any age group and no reservations are required. The Nature Center is located off Jack McDowell Way near the Prairie Bison Pasture off Darby Creek Drive.

Two other Metro Parks will hold Earth Day activities as well. Blendon Woods will hold a 1.5-mile Earth Day night hike through the woods at 8 p.m., beginning at the Nature Center.

At 6 p.m. at Sharon Woods, volunteers will help pull invasive plants and pick up litter along the trails and around waterways. Volunteers for this program should register at earthdaycolumbus.org.

For more information, go to metroparks.net or call (614) 878-7106.

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