We’ve survived the winter! You can say goodbye to it being 6:00 and already dark, you can put away your puffy jackets and mittens, and say hello to spring. Spring is the season of new beginnings, the days are longer, flowers are blooming, birds are hatching, and the earth looks alive! We can all now spend our days frolicking out and about, basking in the sun at Natural Bridges or hiking through upper campus. Robin Williams once said “spring is nature’s way of saying, let’s Party,” so here are ten things to look forward to in spring.
1. Free First Friday at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History (MAH): The first Friday of every month admission into the MAH is free for everyone, and every Friday there are extended hours so you can have more time to check out exhibits, talks and live music. The upcoming exhibits are “Everybody’s Ocean” an evolving exhibit that displays art work from a total of 271 local artists.
2. National Geographic’s “4 Baby Bird Cams You Should Watch This Spring: This web page allows you to watch live streaming footage of four baby birds in their nest, and if you watch at the right time you might be able to catch Bald Eagles hatch out of their eggs. It includes footage of two Bald Eagle nests, Great Horned Owls, and Barn Owls from the Bay Area. Check it out here.
3. First Tuesday Free Admission at the Arboretum: Every first Tuesday of the month there is free admission into the Arboretum where you can see native plants from Australia, California, South Africa, New Zealand, and more. However, if you are a UCSC student, the Arboretum is free every single day. Yep, you read that right. The Arboretum also offers workshops and has volunteer opportunities, so make sure to check out their website for more information about these events.
4. 14th Annual Earth Summit: Hosted by the Student Environmental Center, the Earth Summit is an engaging conference on sustainability. It features workshops, food, student art, and tabling from various environmental centered student organizations. So come check it out on April 24 starting at 11:00 am at the Colleges 9/10 Multi-purpose room.
5. UCSC Campus Natural Reserve Hike: Get outside and get moving by joining Alex Jones and Gage Dayton on a hike of the campus natural reserves. You will learn about the campus reserve system and the various ecosystems it encompasses. The hike is free on April 25. For more information, click here.
6. Earth Week: Earth Week is from April 19th to April 25th. The theme this year is Your Plate, Your Food, Your Impact, and it is hosted by College 8. Come to the Food Fight- Forum on April 24 from 6pm to 7:30 where you can participate in a discussion focusing on “What does it mean to Eat”, addressing the topics of social and environmental impacts of food systems. Then on April 25 at 5pm to 7pm come to the Sustainable Food Choice Fair where there will be interactive stations, food, and tabling from student environmental organizations — a great way to end Earth Week.
7. Downtown Santa Cruz Farmers Market: Spring is here and so many delicious fruits and vegetables are in season like grapefruits, strawberries, and asparagus. Yummy! Come purchase locally grown produce and support local jobs, small scale farming, and reduce your carbon foot print by shopping local. The farmers market is located downtown every Wednesday from 1:30 to 5:30.
8. Food Chains Documentary Showing: The UC Global Food Initiative is showing the film Food Chains at the Del Mar Theater. The film centers around the issue of environmental justice and equality in the food system by telling the story of the struggles tomato pickers face to gain humane work practices in Florida. The movie is playing on April 8th at 7:00 pm.
9. Kristin Walter: Empowering Student Entrepreneurship to Mitigate Hunger: On Thursday May 7 from 2pm to 8pm come to the Kresge Town Hall for an interactive presentation on how you can join the movement to end hunger and raise donations that will go towards organizations with proven track records of sustainable hunger
10. Gaia Spring 2015 Published: Coming to a location near you is the newest edition of Gaia Magazine!!! We are thrilled to distribute our 7th edition of Gaia, so keep on the lookout for a new copy around campus. And if you’ve missed the past 6 editions, we have them posted as PDFs here.