The Alan Day Community Garden will launch the 2021 growing season on Earth Day with a garden blessing and work party on April 24. Emily Delamater

NORWAY — Now that the snow has melted and the ice is out Lake Pennessewassee, the Center for an Ecology-Based Economy, the Alan Day Community Garden, and Spoke Folks are ready to greet spring, along with other community partners.

CEBE and The Gem Movie Theater in Bethel have partnered to present Emmy-winning producer, Joe Gantz’s film, “The Race to Save the World”, on Earth Day at 7:30 p.m. The Race to Save the World is a feature documentary film that follows the stories of everyday people who devote their lives to fighting climate change.

CEBE is sponsoring free admission to the film at The Gem’s Outdoor Theater next Thursday. A community talk start at 7:30 p.m. and the film will be shown at 8 p.m.

“Seating is limited to 50 people,” said Seal Rossignal, Programming & Education Director for CEBE. “We encourage reservations and donations will be welcome.

“Those who would prefer not to come to an in-person event may purchase tickets to watch the film online. For more information visit The Race to Save the World.”

More events will be presented in Norway on April 24 to commemorate Earth Day. The work, and celebrations, start at 9 a.m. Saturday and will continue until 4 p.m. In case of poor weather, the rain date will be the following weekend on May 31.

“We will meet at Longley Square Park at 9 a.m. to start clean-up,” said Jess Cooper, Youth Climate Action Coordinator for CEBE and co-owner of Spoke Folks in an email statement. “Spoke Folks and CEBE are organizing this clean-up portion of the event. There will be two groups that doing water side cleanups: one along the lake (from the rest area back and one along the stream starting at Water street and going back behind the opera house area parallel to Main Street.

“We encourage folks who would like to participate in the group clean-up by the lake to bring their bikes and proper footwear/rubber gloves.”

CEBE will provide instructions on what participants can and cannot take for trash from the water. A representative from the Norway Police Department will be on standby to handle sharps and other items that pose possible health risks. Maps of Norway downtown will be available for people who prefer to work on neighborhood clean-up.

The clean-up will run from 9 a.m. until noon, with CEBE, Spoke Folks and Alan Day Community Garden volunteers stationed at Longley square to direct folks as they come to participate.

“We plan to be sorting trash in the kiosk any salvageable returnables, #2 plastic, tin and aluminum according to the Norway Transfer Station’s guidelines),” Cooper said. “Cafe Nomad will be sending us carafes of hot coffee and tea to share with the community.”

At noon everyone is invited back to Longley Square for a performance from the NEVAEH Dance Circus, as well as brief speeches from youth climate organizers from the Norway Youth Climate Action team and CEBE.

Events will move to the Alan Day Community Garden at 12:30 p.m., where the Progress Center will provide a light community lunch. Socially distanced seating will be set up at the garden.

Alan Day Community Garden founder Katey Branch, left, will lead a garden blessing in Norway on April 24. Supplied image

“At 1 p.m. Katie Branch will lead our annual garden blessing,” said ADCG Executive Director Rocky Crocket. “It will be briefer than in previous years, but she will announce our plans for the year and everyone will have time to introduce themselves.

“And from there we will hold a ‘work party,’ to tidy and weed the garden plots, clean limbs and debris, organize tools and do some prep for our new high tunnel.”

The new high tunnel is one of ADCG’s big additions for the year. Delivered last fall, the 30’ x 70’ structure will not be constructed until late in the season, but this spring and summer Crockett said volunteers will focus on making space and improving the soil in time to plant some fall crops.

“The main takeaways that we want from Earth Day this year is to highlight the cooperation of so many of the organizations downtown, especially after having to cancel this event last year due to COVID,” said Cooper. “We will measure the amount of trash we collect as a community and then haul it sustainably by bike to the transfer station. We aim to share back out to the community afterwards just how much was collected/sorted.

“And to really kickstart the community garden this year with a proper work party.”

 

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