Green Corner: Sprout green initiatives for the springtime

At first it didn’t seem like the infamous groundhog made a correct prediction, but are the times finally changing? Has spring at last sprung? Hopefully the recent spurts of pleasant weather are a preview of what’s to come after students have been cooped up all winter, itching to get out of their dorms.
Spring offers that perfect in-between weather when it’s a good time to enjoy the great outdoors with activities such as hiking, biking and just spending some time at a park.
Rider has four parks within a five-mile radius from the Lawrenceville campus. Grab a bike and a friend and explore the beautiful nature that the area has to offer. If you enjoy getting your hands dirty, volunteer at Rider’s community garden, Green Acres, and help prepare for the spring crops. Before we know it, it will be May and Terhune Orchards will begin offering its delicious pick-your-own line-up of fruits and veggies.
If you prefer not to sport athletic clothes while enjoying Mother Nature, try taking a stroll through Princeton Borough and support some of the local businesses. There is a variety of ways to experience nature while preserving the Earth, and who wouldn’t want to be outdoors in beautiful weather?
If springtime to you means spring cleaning, hopefully it doesn’t also mean using harsh chemicals and tossing everything in your closet away. The Daily Green offers some do-it-yourself green cleaning recipes, such as using baking soda and water. And why throw away your clothes when you can donate them? Children’s and teenager’s clothing are accepted at Big Brother, Big Sister establishments. If you have any ratty clothing, leave those items out of the donation bag, and as The Huffington Post’s “Top 10 Green Spring Cleaning Tips” suggests, cut them into rags for cleaning.
Clothing, small appliances and other items are always accepted by Home Front in Lawrenceville and by any Salvation Army.
According to The Huffington Post, spring cleaning also means trimming down your electric bill. You can save energy by drying your clothes on a clothesline or drying rack instead of throwing them in the dryer and opening a window instead of turning on the air conditioner.
Whether you celebrate the arrival of spring by exploring nature or by starting fresh with a full spring cleaning, it’s simple to adopt sustainable practices. Not only does it not have an impact on the environment, but spending time outdoors also is the perfect way to get some sun and exercise. And it fits into any budget.

-Stephanie Eppolito
Lawrenceville Eco-Rep

Printed in the 3/29/13 edition.

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