Students Celebrate Earth Day -- More Than 40 Years After First E - - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Students Celebrate Earth Day -- More Than 40 Years After First Earth Day in 1970

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Earth Day in North Dakota was April 22nd, but it was celebrated today by 700 sixth graders at the Sixth Annual Earth Day Festival held at the Bismarck Public Schools Career Academy.

(Walter Cronkite, CBS News, 1970)  "Good evening.  A unique day in American history is ending -- a day set aside for a nationwide outpouring of mankind seeking its own survival.  Earth Day."

The first Earth Day was in 1970 -- a time the public was just becoming aware of pollution and conservation.  Over four decades later, many communities are still grappling with issues like recycling.  But not these sixth graders.  They're enjoying the experience.

"I really like Earth Day, because I'm all into recycling, that kind of stuff, and so I think this is really fun," says Margaret Bjelanovic, Pioneer Elementary School.  "I just think of a day celebrating the Earth with a lot of recycling in it.  It was awesome!" says Severyn Jones, Pioneer Elementary School.

They're also learning an appreciation for the outdoors to get them thinking about the cycle of life and what's out there.  It's also about conservation and what people can do to save money. 

"One way is by using the new light bulbs.  How you can conserve on water, for instance, just shutting off your faucet while brushing your teeth.  Just little things that you, as a person, can do to help your environment and some of those savings that can be passed on," says Mary Stevens, Executive Director of the Dakota Prairies Resource Conservation and Development.

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