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Nashville Earth Day Comes Around Again at Centennial Park

by Rich and Laura Lynch

Nashville Earth Day returned to its rightful place in the city on Saturday, April 22, 2023 at Centennial Park in Nashville. This free family event - designed to bring the local community together to celebrate our planet, inspire positive environmental change, and support sustainable small businesses & nonprofits was noticeably larger than last year's outing that was still feeling the impacts of the pandemic. On Earth Day, the weather was nearly perfect and it truly seemed like a celebration of our planet and a long-awaited return to normalcy was taking place in the shadow of the Parthenon.


We were glad to be in Nashville on Earth Day.

Nashville Earth Day featured engaging & educational activities from a variety of exhibitors and vendors, including: local growers & makers, nonprofits, sustainable small businesses, and state/metro government agencies. They had yoga from Small World Yoga, live music, Kidsville activities, local food vendors, and craft beer. Plus, a popular give away of 500 free trees courtesy of the Nashville Tree Foundation with sponsorship from Amazon was creating quite the buzz among attendees. Sapling varieties included red maple, white oak, sweetbay magnolia, American yellowwood and flowering cherry.

"Centennial Park Conservancy is honored to host Nashville Earth Day at the park once again," says Justin Branam, Vice President of Programming for Centennial Park Conservancy prior to the weekend. "This year's event promises to be the best yet. We're so grateful to our partner Urban Green Lab for bringing their sustainability expertise to the event, not only to provide practical and helpful tips for attendees but to also help eliminate event waste. Between our fantastic lineup of speakers, on-site exhibitors and vendors, live music, and Kidsville activities, there's truly something for everyone at this year's Earth Day celebration."


Stacey Kelleher kicked off the music portion of the day.

Speaking of live music - the band shell was busy all day long featuring some of the region's favorite singer-songwriters and notable up and comers. This year we enjoyed the acoustic tones and tales of brittle heartbreak sung by the captivating Stacey Kelleher who was followed in quick succession by Ellisa Sun, Gustavo Moradel, Phillip-Michael Scales, Kyshona - before Lera Lynn brought the festivities to a close with her much anticipated set.

"There's never been a more important time to celebrate our earth and explore how Nashvillians can make a positive impact," says Urban Green Lab Executive Director Todd Lawrence. "Urban Green Lab is proud to partner with the Centennial Park Conservancy and help spark more conversation about how to achieve our sustainability goals as a city and a planet."


Two electric car shows dominated the landscape.

Adding to the electric atmosphere of the day was two separate EV car shows taking place on the grounds of the park. Other notable vendors that caught our attention on Saturday included Bach To Rock, Burns Village Farm, Candle with a Handle, CBD American Shaman, Compost Nashville, Cumberland River Compact, Drive Electric Nashville, Greenways for Nashville, Nashville Area Beekeepers Association and the Tennessee Bird Brigade.

"Every day is Earth Day at Metro Parks, and we hope others will embrace that concept too! Sustainability and resilience are cornerstones of the department's mission to provide everyone in the city with an inviting network of parks and greenways. The celebration of Earth Day in Centennial Park helps us emphasize the importance of protecting our natural resources, not just for us, but for future generations as well. Now more than ever, it's critical that we increase efforts in the areas of conservation, sustainability, and protection for this planet we call Earth," said Metro Parks Director Monique Horton Odom.


Sights and scenes at Nashville Earth Day 2023.

There were also celebrity sightings including WSMV's Snowbird - a penguin mascot who has been known for making television appearances to announce school closings on snowy winter mornings. Snowbird became famous for his classroom visits and parade sightings. Unbelievably, he was given his walking papers in 2017 but the network brought him back and he was in a fine mood as we greeted him with the Parthenon looming in the distance.

Centennial Park Conservancy is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to preserve, enhance, and share the Parthenon and Centennial Park so all future generations may benefit from these cultural and enriching landmarks. The organization works in partnership with Metro Parks to protect and revitalize the Park's green space, underwrite the Parthenon's exhibition and educational programs, and present accessible and inclusive community programming to sustain the Park's vibrancy.


Snowbird made a glorious return from his forced retirement.

Related Links: For more information on NASHVILLE EARTH DAY and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links - Nashville Earth Day | Centennial Park Conservancy


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