Earth Day is celebrated in more than 192 countries each year, and an estimated 20 million Americans participate in events marking the occasion that promote a healthy, sustainable environment.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has a substantial stake in the health of the environment. The Corps’ water resources missions include environmental stewardship, ecosystem restoration, and regulatory responsibilities under the Clean Water Act.
“As stewards of the environment, the Corps of Engineers recognizes that healthy ecosystems benefit everyone,” said Col. Christopher Hall, commander of the St. Louis District. “By managing and conserving our natural resources, we can provide a better quality of life to the communities we serve.”
Some of the best places to see environmental missions in action is at the Corps’ lake and recreation sites in the St. Louis area. Since 1989, the St. Louis District has planned and hosted numerous events celebrating Earth Day, and this year is no different. From special events for area schools to public celebrations, the Corps is part of Earth Day throughout the region.
St. Louis Earth Day at Forest Park
The Rivers Project Office, in partnership with the Meeting of the Rivers Foundation and the Mississippi River Water Trail Association, will host two booths at the St. Louis Earth Day Celebration April 27 at Forest Park. The USACE/MTRF booth will be staffed by two Riverlands Rangers and will engage visitors in hands-on activities about bird beak adaptations. They will also hand out water safety goodies and provide information on upcoming events and programs. The Mississippi River Water Trail Association will have information about the area water trails, safety tips for paddlers, and water safety messages for visitors.
Jefferson City, Mo.
Team members from Mark Twain Lake, Rivers Project Office and our St. Louis District Operations team will represent the Corps of Engineers at the Missouri Earth Day 2014 event at the State Capital April 25 in Jefferson City. This year's slogan is "Watersheds: Go with the Flow, Clean H2O" and the Corps will be providing activities on water safety and the importance of the Mississippi River to our culture and environment. For more information visit: https://www.dnr.mo.gov/earthday/.
Wappapello Lake kicked off this year’s Earth Day celebrations in St. Louis District April 16 and 17. In partnership with the University of Missouri Extension Service, Wappapello hosted 547 local 8th grade students who participated in seven environmental educational listening sessions. Each session was lead by subject matter experts from several environmental organizations.
Mark Twain Lake
The M.W. Boudreaux Memorial Visitor Center at Mark Twain Lake and Clarence Cannon Dam, Mo., celebrated Earth Day by displaying the Mark Twain Elementary 1st Grade Zoo Exhibit, featuring artwork created by students from Hannibal’s Mark Twain Elementary School. The zoo exhibit project challenged young students to learn important concepts in all academic areas by reading and researching facts about their zoo animals. The project was on display from April 12 through April 20.
Carlyle Lake will host their 19th annual “Celebrate the Earth” event April 25 in the Dam West Day Use Area. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with more than two thousand students from eighteen local schools in attendance. The event brings in thirty-three professionals from organizations including the St. Louis Science Center, Wild Bird Sanctuary, Butterfly House, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and University of Illinois. “Celebrate the Earth” is only open to schools that have pre-registered for the event, and not open to the general public.
The Rend Lake Earth Day Celebration is two days of environmental education for grade school students May 1 and 2 at the Rend Lake Project Office and Visitor Center (participation is by reservation only). The event gets students out of the "indoor classroom" and into the "outdoor classroom." Students will experience many aspects of the natural world by participating in a variety of hands-on activities, hikes, wildlife programs, and games, all with an environmental focus.
Release no. 14-031