Florida celebrates Earth Day with weeklong roster of environmental events

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The Florida Department of Environmental Protection celebrates 2014 Earth Day throughout the next week with a roster of environmentally conscious activities in state parks and aquatic preserves throughout the state.

Residents and visitors alike will have opportunities to volunteer, learn and enjoy the diverse ecosystems that make up the natural beauty and wonder of Florida.

Established in 1970, April 22 will mark the 44th annual Earth Day, which began as a time reflect the critical role the ecosystem plays in our lives.

Weeklong Earth Day events range from beach cleanup efforts to local festivals for all interested in recognizing, protecting and advocating for our most valuable asset — Florida’s environment.

Parks and aquatic preserves statewide will provide activities beginning this weekend through April 27, as a way to extend the original objectives of Earth Day — as well as offering a little something for everyone.

For those wanting to get their hands dirty, the following volunteer events provide the best chance:

For those interested in learning more about Florida’s unique ecosystems:

For those looking to meet other environmental enthusiasts to celebrate Earth Day in one of our award-winning state parks:

The popularity of Earth Day began with participants and celebrants in about two thousand colleges and universities, nearly ten thousand primary and secondary schools, and hundreds of communities across the United States. More than four decades later, Earth Day has grown into a global phenomenon representing the struggle for a clean environment as the world’s climate changes with increasing urgency, and its influence is being felt every day.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.