Earth Day 2010: Rutgers University, Newark Volunteers Will Beautify Newark Campus, Help Thirsty Birds

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Campus Volunteers Also Will Ready Newark Conservancy Gardens on April 23

NEWARK, April 16, 2010

– For the sixth year, Earth Day will bring together members of the Rutgers community in Newark for two days of “green” service to the campus and city.

• On WEDNESDAY, APRIL 21 (rain date: Wednesday, April 28), volunteers will weed and “prep” gardens on the Norman Samuels Plaza, and also create a permanent watering spot for birds, installing a four-foot round fiberglass pool that will provide an oasis for thirsty birds. Working under the direction of Rutgers Assistant Prof. Claus Holzapfel, a plant ecologist who specializes in the creation of urban “wildlands,” the volunteers will sink the seven-inch-deep pool into a large planted area – nicknamed the “Smith ramble” – in front of Smith Hall. The pool will include a solar panel to power an aerating device which will circulate the water, to attract birds while keeping the water from getting stagnant.

• On FRIDAY, APRIL 23 (rain date: April 29), volunteers will pitch in to weed, rake, plant and prepare compost at the gardens at the Greater Newark Conservancy’s Urban Environmental Center, Springfield Avenue and Prince Street, Newark.

WHO: Volunteer students, faculty, and staff

• On-campus activities: Wednesday, April 21 (rain date: Wednesday, April 28), 12:30 p.m. – 4 p.m., Norman Samuels Plaza (entrances from University Avenue and the Paul Robeson Campus Center at 350 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

• Greater Newark Conservancy activities on Friday, April 23 (rain date: Thursday April 29) 10:30 a.m. – noon and 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., Greater Newark Conservancy’s Urban Environmental Center, Springfield Avenue and Prince Street, Newark.

BACKGROUND: Earth Day allows the Rutgers family to give back to the community by making Newark more “green.” Rutgers volunteers planted the existing gardens on past Earth Days to help demonstrate sustainable gardening and create bird- and butterfly-friendly habitats on campus, a green oasis in Newark’s concrete canyons. Students also learn how to become environmental stewards.


CONTACT: Carla Capizzi, 973/353-5263,