30 for 30 Challenges

 

Challenges can be completed in any order and on any day

 

Take a Guided Wildflower Walk
Join Master Gardener, Mary Kay Weber at Columbus County Park Lodge on Saturday, April 24 at 1:00 p.m. for a guided spring wildflower walk. View many different types of wildflowers as you stroll along a 1/2 mile trail. For Columbus County Park directions visit, Parks & Recreation 


Test Your Recycling Knowledge
Take a recycling quiz and tell us how much you know about recycling! Find the quiz here, TEACHER AND STUDENT QUIZ: Can You Recycle It?


Collect Recyclables
Take your cardboard, plastic, paper, batteries, and metal to Smiths Creek Landfill Recycling Center. Upload your picture to the Earth Fair website, and then stop in the main office to receive a recycled craft kit! For information, hours and directions visit, St Clair County Landfill – Smiths Creek, MI


Explore the Blue Water River Walk 
Go for a stroll along the St. Clair River on the Blue Water River Walk in downtown Port Huron and send us a photo of your favorite view! For more information about the Blue Water River Walk, go to: Blue Water River Walk – Community Foundation of St. Clair County, Michigan 


Make a Pine Cone Bird Feeder
Enjoy this fun, easy craft that benefits all types of birds. Send us a picture of your finished feeder. For instructions, visit: Easy Pine Cone Bird Feeder Project 


Visit a Watershed in St. Clair County
Research information about watersheds and visit your favorite river in St. Clair County. For more information on local watersheds, go to: St. Clair County Watersheds


Measure a Tree
Look in parks, neighborhoods or cemeteries for the biggest tree. Measure the girth, or circumference, of the tree using a flexible measuring tape. How big was the tree? For more information on how to measure a tree, visit: Family Activity: How Big is Your Tree?  and Outdoor Play for Kids – 3 Tree Themed Activities 


Go on an Energy Efficiency Home Scavenger Hunt
Take an energy efficiency scavenger hunt at your home and learn if you have any energy vampires sucking all your energy from your house. Send us the results of your scavenger hunt! Thank you to Consumers Energy for providing this great Earth Day activity. Download activity sheet


Start a Backyard Species List Using the SEEK App
Identify and record plants, birds, animals and insects using the free Seek app. Complete a challenge on the Seek app and share your favorite discovery. You’ll be able to identify all types of plants and wildlife in your neighborhood or favorite park in no time! Check out how to use the Seek app by visiting: Nature Around Us: How to Use the SEEK App   

Download the app:
Android: Seek by iNaturalist – Apps on Google Play 
Apple:  ‎Seek by iNaturalist on the App Store  


Clean a Storm Drain
Locate a storm drain near your house. Check for man-made debris (litter) and natural debris (soil, leaves, rocks). Debris in storm drains can cause flooding in streets and yards if the grates are blocked. Litter that goes down the storm drain ends up in our rivers and streams. Using gloves and other tools, remove the debris, sweep up the dirt and dispose of it properly. Remember, storm drains aren’t garbage cans! Only rain in the drain!


Discover Where Your Water Comes From
If you live in a city in St. Clair County close to the St. Clair River, chances are your drinking water comes from the St. Clair River. Click the link, Water Plant Tour, to take a tour of Port Huron’s water filtration plant showing how water is withdrawn and cleaned from the river and sent to homes. If you do not live in St. Clair County, but still get municipal water from a different river or lake, the process is similar. Check with your city to find out the source of your drinking water.


Find Solutions to Water Pollution
Pollution can come from a variety of sources, like bacteria from pet and wildlife waste; nutrients from agricultural and residential fertilizer runoff; storm water runoff picking up litter; aquatic and terrestrial invasive species; loss of wetlands and high quality habitats; and soil erosion causing sedimentation and log jams. While some of these problems are harder to address for just one person, we can all do something small to help tackle some of these problems. Check out the website, Protect Our Watershed, for pollution prevention tips you can do around your home. Choose one thing you or your family and friends can do or change to help protect your watershed!


Learn to Identify an Invasive Species
An invasive species is a non-native organism whose introduction causes or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm, or harm to human, animal, or plant health. Learning to identify invasive species helps them from spreading! Garlic Mustard and Dames Rocket are two easy to identify invasive plants that can safely be removed by hand. You can also report which plants you find using the Midwest Invasive Species Information Network reporting tool


Wash it on Cold
We all have dirty laundry, right? The next time you find yourself in need of washing your clothes, choose cold water. Roughly 75 percent of the energy required to do a load of laundry goes into heating the water. Go the extra mile for Earth day and hang your clothes to dry. For more information on washing clothes in cold water, visit: The Case for Washing Clothes in Cold Water  


Calculate and Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
Carbon footprints come from the amount of greenhouse gases that we emit into the atmosphere from driving our cars. Reduce your carbon footprint today by riding a bike to school or work or using public transportation! You can calculate your carbon footprint for free here: www.goclimate.com/us


Go on a Trash Free Picnic Lunch
Pack a trash free lunch by putting your food in reusable containers and head to your favorite picnic spot. For information on how to pack a trash free lunch, visit: Pack a Waste-Free Lunch-Trash Free Lunches!


Make it Musical
Spend some time making a musical instrument out of recycled materials. Use empty toilet paper rolls, paper towel rolls, old string, rocks, cotton, or empty drink bottles to create a one of a kind masterpiece. For more information on making musical instruments out of recycled materials, visit: Make Your Own Instruments from Recycled Materials


Go Screen Free for the Day
Use less energy and unplug for the day! Enjoy your day riding a bike, painting, walking on a new trail, reading a book or anything else you enjoy that doesn’t require electricity. Using less electricity helps keep the planet healthier for the future. 


Conserve Water While Brushing Your Teeth
Place a bowl under the faucet while you brush your teeth for 2 minutes while the water is running. Measure the amount of water in the bowl. Next, compare that to brushing your teeth for 2 minutes while only running the water when necessary. Compare the two amounts of water. Which method used less water?


Turn Off and Unplug Electronics and Small Appliances When They are Not in Use 
One of the simplest ways to use less energy is to use a power strip to group appliances like your TV, gaming console, speakers, DVD player, and streaming devices, so you can turn them all off at the same time. Please ask an adult for help before unplugging any items or touching outlets. For information, visit: Just How Much Power Do Your Electronics Use When They Are ‘Off’?


Learn About Famous Naturalists 
Research famous naturalists or scientists that have impacted the natural world in a profound way. Get started with Freeman Tilden, John Muir, Rachel Carson, John James Audubon or Enos Mills. Send us the individual you researched and one way they had a positive impact on making the earth a better place.


Explore a Park, Beach or Trail
Visit one of the many parks, beaches or trails in St. Clair County. Take along a garbage bag and a pair of gloves to pick up trash. For a list of local parks, beach and trails, visit: Parks & Recreation  and City of Port Huron 


Choose Native Plants for your Landscaping
Choosing native plants allows for a beautiful landscape in your yard with plants that are well-adapted to local soil and climate. They require less fertilization and watering. There are many different native species for sale at the Blue Water Conservation District sale including: White Pines, Red Pines, Pin and Swamp white oaks, and many more. For a full list of plants available for purchase, visit: www.bluewatercd.org.

For a list of Michigan native pants, visit Department of Entomology Native Plants and Ecosystem Services.

Join the Master Gardener Facebook page for answers to gardening questions https://www.facebook.com/groups/233236833540398.  


Go on a Goose Chase with Michigan State University Extension
Play a free, interactive and competitive scavenger hunt for the whole family at the Goodells County Park using the Goose Chase App. Each household will need to register at least one child at v2.4honline.com. When registering, select “Earth Fair Scavenger Hunt” under the club heading. Once registered participants will receive detailed instructions and the code for the Goose Chase App. Contact MSU-E with questions regarding this event at: (810) 989-6935.


Read a Book
There are many great books in libraries and online that inspire us to be better environmentalists. One of our favorite books, The Lorax by Dr. Seuss, is an important reminder of just what can happen when people stop caring about the environment. Read a book, upload a picture to our website of you holding the book and tell us what inspires you to protect and conserve the Earth. For more information on other great books, go to: Outdoor Play for Kids – 3 Tree Themed Activities


Go Geocaching
Geocaching is an outdoor recreational activity, in which participants use a GPS on a mobile device like your phone to hide and seek containers, called “caches,” at specific locations marked by coordinates. You can geocache anywhere in the world, including your own town! For more information, visit: https://www.geocaching.com/play


Create Eco-Art
Creating art is a great way to spend time indoors and still connect to the Earth. Reuse materials from around the house and create something new, like jewelry, bags or plant holders. Transform trash into treasure by creating a sculpture out of recyclables. Gather some inspiration from books, magazines or nature. 


Start a Compost Bin
Composting makes use of kitchen and garden scraps to create nutrients for the plants in your garden. Composting also keeps useful, organic waste out of landfills. Composting isn’t difficult. To learn more about composting itself, including how to do it, visit: Composting At Home | Reduce, Reuse, Recycle 


Donate Gently Used Items
Take your gently used items to charities that will see those items placed into the hands of people who need them instead of the landfill. On average, it is estimated people throw away 68 pounds of clothing per year. Charities like Habitat for Humanity (Donate goods to Habitat for Humanity ReStore ), Salvation Army (Port Huron) and Goodwill Industries of St. Clair County (GoodwillSCC Port Huron, MI) rely on donations for their charitable work. 


Switch to Energy Saving Light Bulbs
The Environmental Protection Agency reports that if every household in the U.S. replaced just one standard incandescent light bulb with an energy-efficient one, the nation would save about $600 million annually in energy costs. Do the earth a favor and switch to energy efficient light bulbs that will save energy and money. Visit your local hardware store today to start saving you money and helping the earth!


Michigan Soybean Committee
Learn about soybeans and how they make Earth a better place! Download activity sheet