District News

Celebrate Earth Day in Lincoln Square

Apr 15, 2024
Celebrate Earth Day in Lincoln Square

The first Earth Day was celebrated in the United States on April 22, 1970. The holiday is now well-recognized by nonprofits, businesses, and individuals around the globe; unfortunately, even with increasing awareness about the need to protect our planet, glaciers are melting, temperatures are rising, and greenhouse gas emissions are at an all-time high. Nevertheless, here are a few ways to celebrate the Earth on April 22 and to continue making a positive impact all year round.

botanistestory It’s no secret that the agriculture and livestock industries greatly affect the health of our bodies and our planet. At Le Botaniste (156 Columbus Ave between W 66th and W 67th St), experience flavorful plant-based dishes. Not only is the restaurant fully vegan, but in 2016, Le Botaniste was certified as carbon-neutral. The company has gone even further to improve the Earth, planting trees in northwest Peru and Armenia, areas heavily impacted by deforestation. Épicerie Boulud (1900 Broadway at W 64th St) is also taking steps to reduce waste this year. Visit on Earth Day (April 22) with your reusable cup to receive a free cup of coffee.

You can also cut down your environmental impact by sourcing local produce and goods—including from the Greenmarket that runs each Thursday and Saturday in Richard Tucker Park from 8:00am to 4:00pm. This GrowNYC location includes a compost program on Thursdays; it will end on May 16, but you’ll still be able to drop your compost off at the City’s Smart Composting Bins (find a full map of locations here). Plus, by October 6, 2024, curbside composting will be citywide. Throwing all yard waste, food scraps, and food-soiled paper into compost bins allows the materials to be used to make compost or renewable energy, reducing the amount of material sent to landfills and cutting down on methane emissions. 

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, “greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from transportation account for about 29 percent of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, making it the largest contributor of U.S. GHG emissions.” One way that individuals can make an impact is by choosing to walk, bike, or use public transportation rather than driving, whenever possible. To make the choice even easier, Citi Bike, the City’s shared bike fleet, will be offering free 30-minute rides on classic Citi Bikes on April 20. To take advantage of the promotion, enter the code CARFREE24 in the Citi Bike app.

In Lincoln Square, many stores are making pledges to protect the planet. At Aveda (located in The Shops at Columbus), you can purchase vegan hair-care products that are naturally derived and sustainably packaged (learn more here). Also at The Shops at Columbus Circle, via its Renew program, Eileen Fisher accepts pre-loved Eileen Fisher pieces in-store in return for $5 per item in Renew Rewards. The received pieces are then resold, donated, or remade into something new as part of the company’s “vision for designing a future without waste.”

Beyond recycling at home or using the Lincoln Square BID's public BigBelly cans, some of which even include recycling bins, local events provide opportunities to responsibly dispose of materials. On Sunday, April 21, from 10:00am to 2:00pm, visit the Marlene Meyerson JCC (334 Amsterdam at W 76th Street) for an Earth Day Community Recycling event. You’ll be able to recycle e-waste thanks to the Lower East Side Ecology Center or recycle unwanted clothing and textiles with Green Tree Textile Recycling (they are accepting donations of gently used spring and summer clothing).

earthdayeventlcOn April 21, the New York Society for Ethical Culture (2 W 64th Street at Central Park West) will host a free Intergenerational Spring Fest from 11:00am till 12:30pm. The event will include a special performance from the current Society Eco-Artist in Residence (Jody Sperling), their youth orchestra, a multi-media presentation, an Earth Day peace pole ceremony, and more. The next day, on April 22 at 7:30pm, the Juilliard Green Club will perform a multi-genre concert in the David Rubenstein Atrium (1887 Broadway between W 62nd St and W 63rd) that will ask the audience "to consider our collective futures in the face of climate change amidst differences in background, class, resources, and geographical location." Then, on April 27, The Juilliard School and Lincoln Center will celebrate Earth Month with the New York premiere of Crossing Open Ground, an outdoor work by John Luther Adams for winds, brass, and percussion. Juilliard students and alumni will dance and perform at locations throughout the Lincoln Square campus from 11:00am until 4:00pm, encouraging viewers to “slow down and remember their place within the larger community of life on Earth.” No tickets necessary.

To stay up-to-date on other local environmental events, organizations, and more, subscribe to Upper West Side Recycling’s bi-monthly eco-newsletter. UWSR actually first started after the original Earth Day and continues to share environmental information today!

UWSR puts it best: "There’s no single, magical solution to the environmental problems human beings have imposed upon this planet.” That being said, Earth Day is the perfect opportunity to re-engage in conversations around the planet and environmentalism. Whether you’d like to recycle, change your shopping patterns, or discuss a piece of art, everyone can find a way to celebrate Earth Day this year!

Photo Credit:
Image 1 - Lincoln Square BID
Image 2 - Le Botaniste from website
Image 3 - Kevin Yatarola for the West Side Rag