April 18 is Green Village Day in Southeast Como

The Southeast Como Improvement Association (SECIA), its student group and a host of other community partners will celebrate spring on April 18, 11:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m., at Van Cleve Park, 901 15th Ave. SE.

Green Village Day will be chock full of activities and information with a sustainability theme, much of it aimed at the student population but inclusive of the larger Southeast Como community.

Stephanie Hankerson, SECIA’s community garden organizer, ran down the list of green-related, student-interest aspects, including a bike auction and bike-share program, a swap meet for those who are moving out after the semester (“things you can carry,” she said — no large furnishings), and a demonstration of green cleaning products — a great way for students to add a sustainable practice in their own homes, even if they don’t own them. “They can’t control what their landlord can do, but they can control what types of cleaners they use,” said Hankerson.

The day will also kick off SECIA’s community gardening season with information about garden space, a veggie garden booth and a demo of how to make plant starter pots out of newspaper — just one of the many demos that will go on throughout the day.

Also available will be reduced-price rain barrels and information about the residential rain garden program, which offers student helpers, plant-cost reimbursement, training and consultations by landscape designers. “There’s no reason to say no to getting a sponsored rain garden in this season,” said Hankerson. “Were on our way to 25 gardens, and there’s room for more.”

Kids can make pinwheels “to remind folks about [Xcel Energy’s] Windsource [program] — an easy way to offset your carbon footprint through your electrical bill,” said Hankerson, noting that increased consumer involvement in the program will, in turn, remind Xcel to invest more in wind energy. Solar oven demonstrations will highlight another natural energy source, and the fun will include food and music, as well.

For more about SECIA’s Green Village work, visit www.comogreenvillage.org.

The following week, on Sunday, April 26, Southeast Como will hold its annual spring cleanup, 11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m., at Van Cleve Park.

last revised: May 29, 2009