Phinizy Swamp is preparing for its annual Earth Day celebration to be bigger than before.
Earth Day is a worldwide celebration to promote sustainable and green living, said Heather Linn, the events and volunteer manager at Phinizy Swamp. To make the event larger than life this year, Phinizy Swamp is partnering with the city of Augusta and Georgia Regents University to hold one celebration instead of three.
“We just want people come on out and learn a little about sustainable living,” Linn said. “But we’re doing it in a fun way, so it’s not just a boring, educational day. We’re doing it in a way that we’ve got some vendors that are going to be offering some activities with recycled art. Goodwill is going to be coming out and doing a fashion show with recycled clothing, because they are going to bring clothing from their stores and there will also be a drop-off, so if people want to bring any Goodwill donations they can do that as well. Golden Harvest Food Bank is going to be here as well, if people want to be part of the food drive.”
There will also be a lot of local vendors featuring a variety of green products, everything from household cleaning items to green cars, she said. In addition, there will be several recycling companies, so attendees can bring items like car batteries to drop off.
Besides vendors, the celebration will feature a few wildlife shows, including the Flight of the Raptor, she said. This show includes a meet and greet with live hawks and falcons, as well as a hawk walk. The walk will allow a small group of people an opportunity to learn and see how hawks hunt. The Savannah River Ecology team will also bring some reptiles for a demonstration.
To make sure there is more to the celebration than just an educational component, there will also be music, games, food and family activities.
“A majority of our vendors are going to be offering some little art activities or some kind of interaction with everybody,” Linn said. “There’s also going to be the wildlife presentation and interaction. There will be a jumping castle for the kids. We have a nature journalist who is going to do some nature journaling and sketching with people.”
As for what type of food will be served, there will be everything from pizza from Bambinos to hot dogs cooked by the Marine Corps, she said. There will also be frozen yogurt from Yotopia.
Besides activities provided by vendors, there will also be two races to kick off the day.
There will be a Swamp Stop 5K and 10K race at 8 a.m. and a Kid’s Swamp Stomp at 8:30 a.m.
Leading up the event, Phinizy Swamp is hosting a recycled art competition and a nature photography contest.
As to why they wanted to do the recycled art competition, Melody Taylor, the marketing and administrative coordinator said there were a few reasons.
“Well, we just were thinking it would be a fun way to get people involved in art and using recycled materials and natural materials,” Taylor said. “So it kind of goes with the theme of Earth Day, using things recycled, making them look pretty, taking bits of nature and incorporating it into your art. We felt like it was a good fit with Earth Day and what Earth Day is really all about on an international scale.”
The recycled art competition features several categories: elementary school, middle school, high school and adult, each with a different prize, Taylor said. The art must be dropped off by 10 a.m. the day of the event, and the winner will be announced at 12:30 p.m. during the event.
As for the nature photography contest, it will allow local photographers to show off the park through their works, Taylor said. The photos from this contest will also be displayed around Augusta.
“The fun thing about it this year is we’ve got some place we’re going to display the finalists in a traveling show,” Taylor said. “In July we’ve got the Columbia County libraries are doing displays; the big library is going to have it out in that foyer area hanging up and then Euchee Creek has a display case. In the beginning of 2015, we’re going to have a display case up at the airport. And, of course, there will be some in our visitors center.”
For more information on the contests visit naturalsciencesacademy.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 706-828-2109.
Saturday, April 26, is a free event at, from
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Swamp Stop 5K and 10K race
Kid’s Swamp Stomp