A poster promoting Shepherd's annual Earth Day Event outside the Student Center. Anna Cristofano/Picket.

Here’s how Shepherd celebrated the planet last Thursday

Last Thursday, Shepherd University hosted its annual Earth celebration dubbed “Earth Day Event: A Movement for Environmental Justice” on the Midway Lawn outside of the Student Center.

The event was held from noon till 3:00 p.m. as a community event to acknowledge the Earth’s long existence and unite as a forward movement in conservation of our planet.

The event was hosted by various different organizations on campus, with each one either presenting information about the environment, mini games, or local produce to give away.

Shepherd’s Environmental Organization held a table about the environment. The Multicultural Leadership Team held a table presenting how climate change effects different countries worldwide, and hosted a mini game about climate change with prizes included. The Program Board hosted a number of interactive tables where attendees could pick out plants and decorate pots for them. 

Tabler Farm, part of Shepherd’s Agricultural Innovation Center, was also present, giving the opportunity for students to take home some of the grown produce which shepherd students contributed to planting, according to Graduate Assistant for Title IX and Multicultural Student Affairs, Kiara Rakestraw.

The Office for Diversity and Equity also partook in the event.

The university provided various food options for attendees, including food trucks, which were on the lawn from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

An event with multiple organizations such as this one took Shepherd months of planning, with the university even establishing a committee just for making sure the event turns out successful.

The planning that goes into an event like the Earth Day Festival starts months in advance. The Earth Day planning committee started meeting back in late February to start discussing ideas and implementation strategies,” said Rakestraw.

According to Rakestraw and other event organizers, the event is part of a movement on campus create a space for the community to address the current climate and create plans for sustainability and action for environmental and gender justice.

The event came as Earth Day approached, which was on Monday. The holiday commemorating the planet has been celebrated since 1969.

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