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Unique Year to Celebrate Earth Day

The 50th Anniversary and COVID-19

Plumas Earth Days in Plumas County is normally a time to gather together as a community, celebrating the planet in the spirit of Earth Day, which started in 1970 and is celebrated in 192 countries around the world.

Coronavirus is putting the brakes on large social gatherings, so the Plumas Earth Days planning committee is encouraging alternative approaches to honor Earth Day. The fact that 2020 is the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day makes the importance of spending some time and energy in defense of Mother Earth all the more significant.

“These last several weeks we’ve been bombarded with a flurry of confusing and frightening COVID-19 news,” said Darla DeRuiter, Plumas Earth Days planner. “Reconnecting with the natural world and giving back to the planet can help ground us. I know it will help me remember what I love about living here in Plumas County.”

Some Plumas Earth Days activities will occur like normal, others will happen in an alternate format and some will be rescheduled, depending on how things progress with coronavirus. A few activities are being cancelled.

“We’re being as adaptable as we can, given the circumstances,” said DeRuiter, “and we are confident the Plumas County community will understand and be flexible too.”

This year’s main event, a film called “Biggest Little Farm” about a young couple’s joys and challenges operating their own small farm outside of Los Angeles, will be shown through a live-streaming event on Earth Day, April 22.

FRC’s Eco Farm Certificate lead instructor, Jessie Mazar, along with Leslie Pace, will share some wisdom before the film. Together they founded the Lost Sierra Food Project, a new local non-profit focused on providing food access and education, especially for low-income members of our community.

The event is free and begins at 7 p.m. The event will be screened online and the details regarding accessing this event will be released as soon as possible. Please check back for screening details at the Plumas Earth Days Facebook page and Plumasnews.com for the latest updates. Consider making a healthy meal with your household to enjoy during the movie — a few easy recipes are provided below.

The film is co-sponsored by Plumas Earth Days and FRC’s Sustainability Action Team as part of their Spring Sustainability Series.

The Community Sustainability Awards will be announced just before the program. Since 2008, the awards have recognized individuals, businesses and groups that contribute significantly to the economic, community and environmental sustainability of Plumas County.

Nominations are currently being solicited for four categories: Individual, Business, Organization, and Student. Contact Rachel Bauer for more information or to nominate someone: [email protected].

Ansel Adams Photo Contest

The “2020 Ansel Adams Earth Day Photo Contest” through Facebook is a fun event that anyone who takes digital photos and has a Facebook account (or a friend with one) can participate in. There are five categories: black and white, flora and fauna, humanity in nature, landscape and close-up.

All entries are due by April 17 at midnight. Winners are determined by the number of “likes” (people’s choice awards) plus a few special honors. Everyone can participate by “liking” the photos that really speak to you. Ansel Adams spoke at Feather River College for the first Earth Day in 1970.

Trash pick-up and other Earth Day activities

Part of feeling good about Earth Day is doing your part to care for a little corner of the planet. Big trash clean-ups aren’t in the cards this year, but individuals can get outside and pick up trash. Wednesday, April 22, is Earth Day and 5 to 6 p.m. is a great time to do some rubbish removal.

Post photos of you, your family and friends with the trash you picked up on the Plumas Earth Days Facebook page and it will “almost’” feel like we worked together to take care of Plumas County. Awards for oldest item, largest item, most unusual item, and most trash collected by weight will be given, document well.

Students in the Outdoor Recreation Leadership Event Planning class at Feather River College are shifting their focus to activities that can be done safely. The Earth Days group invites you to do something to celebrate Earth Day, like pick up trash, make a donation to a conservation group (see ideas for local groups below), work in your yard or garden, or get outside for a hike.

There are so many ways to think about how much the planet means to the health of every one of us. While you’re at it, snap a photo or two and post your activities at ORL Earth Days on Facebook. You’ll also find links to inspiring short films, articles, and other activities there.

Plumas Earth Days Committee is a group of community-minded, Earth-loving individuals that spontaneously gathers each spring, 13 years running. For more information about this or any Plumas Earth Days event, contact Darla at [email protected] or check plumasearthdays.com.


• Broccoli Pine Nut Pasta

Serves four, quick and really tasty

– 1 pound pasta, cooked al dente (penne is good, but whatever you have)

– 1/8 cup olive oil

– 1 pound broccoli, chopped

– 3 cloves garlic, minced

– 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes

– 1 Tbsp. tamari or soy

– 1/4 c. fresh grated parmesan cheese

– 1/8 c. pine nuts, toasted (or more!)

– Juice of 1 lemon (or 2 Tbsp. lemon juice)

Start water to boil. Chop broccoli, and sauté in olive oil about five minutes. Add garlic and red pepper flakes, sauté about 1 minute more. Once pasta is cooked, add to broccoli, mix. Add tamari, parm, pine nuts, stir. Add lemon juice. Season with fresh ground pepper and serve with hot bread.

Easy, Quick & Delish Kale Soup

Serves six to eight

– 1 pound sausage

– 1 onion, chopped

– 3 cloves garlic, minced

– Thyme

– Red pepper flakes

– 1 bunch kale, leaves torn or chopped, stems chopped

– Pepper & a little salt

– 4 cups broth (chicken or veggie) + 3 cups water

– 16 oz can white beans

– 16 oz can tomatoes

– 1 can black olives, sliced large

– Juice of 1 lemon (or 2 Tbsp. lemon juice

Fry sausage in soup pot. Add onion, fry about 6 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, red pepper flakes, and kale stems, fry about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper. Add broth andwater, beans, tomatoes, olives, and simmer. Add kale leaves and lemon juice, simmer for 1 to 2 minutes and serve with hot bread.

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Local Conservation Groups

It’s easy to make a donation to any of these groups and feel good about supporting a healthy Plumas County for future Earth Days:

• Feather River Land Trust, frlt.org

• Friends of Plumas Wilderness, plumaswilderness.org

• Maidu Summit Consortium, maidusummit.org

• Mountain Meadows Conservancy, mtmeadows.org

• Plumas Audubon Society, plumasaudubon.org

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Other Events (Date, Time, Location, Sponsor)

Ansel Adams Photo Contest: March 18 – April 17; Facebook Event: 2020 Ansel Adams Digital Photo Contest; Plumas Earth Days Committee.

Community Sustainability Awards: Individual, Business, Group, Student; Now – April 17; Nominate at or questions [email protected].; Plumas Earth Days Committee.Trash pick-up throughout Plumas County: Wednesday, April 22, 5 to 6 p.m.; Facebook Event: Plumas Earth Days; Plumas Earth Days Committee.

Our Local Food Scene: “The Biggest Little Farm” film, Jessie Mazar and Leslie Pace speakers, and announcement of Community Sustainability Awards; Wednesday, April 22, 7 p.m., via a web-based streaming service (details will be posted on the Plumas Earth Days Facebook page and at Plumasnews.com as soon as possible), Plumas Earth Days Committee & FRC Sustainability Action Team.

Celebrate Earth Day your way and post on Facebook, April 12 – 30; Facebook Event: ORL Earth Days; FRC Outdoor Recreation Leadership program.

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