Earth Day events to highlight family activities Cleanup, fair, race will be featured SOUTHWEST -- Mount Airy * Woodbine * Taylorsville * Winfield


Mount Airy officials are banking on a youth- and family oriented theme to draw bigger crowds to Earth Day events next weekend.

RTC "We have more youth and family activities," said Pam Brewer, chairman of the town's Earth Day Committee. "Adults and kids can be together at the fair and the cleanup."

"Celebrate Earth Day -- It's a Family Affair" is the theme of Earth Day events April 24 and 25. The events include a town-wide cleanup and fair Saturday and a 10-kilometer run Sunday.

"Our cleanup crews have always been phenomenal -- we get about 75 people," said Ms. Brewer, who also is a member of the town's Recycling Committee. "The fair hasn't been so big. We had about 30 to 40 people last year. We're hoping for more this year."

The Earth Day Fair starts at noon Saturday at Watkins Park off Route 27. Featured will be craft tables for children and a hands-on science table, which Ms. Brewer said will show youngsters how water used in Mount Airy makes its way to Chesapeake Bay.

A clown and Airy the Recycling Bear, the town's recycling mascot, will be on hand, too.

Entertainment will feature Christine Maccabee, a Thurmont folk singer whose program includes child-oriented songs; a rock band; and speakers including Teresa Bamberger, Mount Airy town planner, and Heather Young, a South Carroll High School junior.

Entertainment begins at noon Saturday and runs until 2:30 p.m.

Trash pickup around Mount Airy will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday.

Volunteers should meet at Watkins Park. Doughnuts and coffee from Megan's Bakery will be served. Volunteers will be divided into groups and given assignments.

South Carroll and Linganore high school students will clean what has become an illegal dumping site off East Ridgeville Boulevard.

"The trash there is just incredible," Ms. Brewer said. "We're going to have a truck there to pick up refrigerators, stoves and oil drums. We will recycle those things and any others things we find that can be recycled."

Local Girl and Boy Scout troops will take part. Brownies will clean Watkins stream. Girl Scouts will clean East-West Park in Frederick County.

Cub Scouts will plant 100 maple seedlings and do mulching at East-West Park. White pine seedlings were planted at the park last year.

Once the trees are two to three feet tall, they will be replanted in parks or open space around Mount Airy, Ms. Brewer said.

Girl Scouts also will weed and do other cleanup work at a designated bird sanctuary on Old Annapolis Road outside of town. The land has been donated to the Audubon Society.

The Earth Day 10K run begins at 8 a.m. Sunday in the park-and-ride lot on Route 27. The 6.2-mile route goes through town and ends across from the Twin Ridge Shopping Center.

The event is sponsored by the town and Health Unlimited.

"The reason for the 10K is to help people see how beautiful our town is," Ms. Brewer said.

The run also will be used as a fund-raiser for future Earth Day events. The Earth Day Committee has operated largely on donations.

About 40 people have registered for the run. Registration is $10 in advance or $12 the day of the event. All participants receive T-shirts. Cash prizes will be awarded for first- and second-place winners. The third-place winner will receive a Mount Airy mug.

Runners may register in person, beginning at 6:30 a.m. Sunday at Health Unlimited, 1001 Twin Arch Road. To register in %J advance, call (301) 829-9730.

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