BE the Change: Earth Day 2009
By Alice Martinez



In his Inaugural Address, President Barack Obama said, "What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility - a recognition on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world; duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly; firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task."

The President's imperative applies to the environment as much as any other aspect of our lives. It's been hard sledding for the environment and environmentalists for the past eight years, with political leaders who went the distance undermining as many environmental protections as they could get away with. The natural world must be breathing a sigh of relief that a promise of change has finally come.

But change requires each of us to contribute.

Do you want to know how you can implement changes in your life that reflect this responsibility toward the natural world?  Would you like visit a "one-stop-shop" for all things environmental in our region?  Then EarthFair is for you.

On Sunday, April 19, San Diego EarthWorks will be presenting the 20th annual EarthFair in Balboa Park, from 10am to 5pm. EarthFair is the world's largest free annual environmental fair and Earth Day celebration.

This year's theme is: BE the change! Our theme is based on the famous quote by Mahatma Gandhi, "Be the change you want to see in the world," and President Obama's promise of "change we can believe in."

EarthFair will feature more than 250 exhibitors to help you take action on behalf of a clean, healthy environment. They represent every type of environmental organization, governmental program and commercial enterprise with goods, services and causes that address our environment and quality of life. They will help you discover how to be the change you want to be.

But wait. . .  there's more.

Producing the largest Earth Day festival in the country requires the help and creativity of more than 400 volunteers. Whether you volunteer for one 3-hour shift, or help out the whole day, EarthFair needs YOU! Come out and help put on a celebration for 60,000 of our closest friends. For complete information, and to sign up to volunteer online, visit

Do you have an organization with a cause, product or service that addresses our environment or quality of life?  Do you create artworks from recycled or found materials, or that reflect our endangered environment?  Do you have an alternative-fuel vehicle to show the world?

If you answered "yes" to any of these, you may want to participate in the fair as an exhibitor. Visit for details.

Do you have a children's group that would like to encourage environmental stewardship by marching in the Children's Earth Parade?  Please visit for additional information, and to register on-line.

Lastly, join the San Diego Earth Day Facebook group; make a promise for what you are going to do, and see what others are up to regarding Earth Week.

If you are not in San Diego County, visit  and find an event near you. Whether doing something personal at home with your friends, or being part of a bigger event, each one of us has a way to observe Earth Day. We all can do things to reduce our impacts and improve on our environmental responsibilities.

Learn more about the nature around you. Join an environmental group.

For more information visit: .

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