BY JULIET CAMA | On Sat., May 14, New Yorkers interested in climate preservation can enjoy a festive parade and performances while learning more about the issues and their neighborhood at Earth Celebrations’ Ecological City: Procession for Climate Solutions.
Felicia Young, the founder of the nonprofit Earth Celebrations, promotes ecological change through the arts in the East Village and Lower East Side. Founded in 1991, Earth Celebrations has successfully preserved local community gardens and developed partnerships with hundreds of organizations looking to make a change. Additionally, Earth Celebrations has established multiple collaborative art projects promoting climate awareness.
From March 5 to May 11, various artists participated in the Ecological City workshops to prepare for the upcoming pageant. At these workshops, artists created remarkable puppets, costumes and visuals using bio-art, a sustainable art form.
“All of the visuals created explore the different sites and climate solutions within them,” Young explained.
The puppets and costumes will be displayed at the pageant on May 14, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The route for the six-hour environmental extravaganza will start at the Sixth Street Community Center, at 638 E. Sixth St., between Avenues B and C. The procession will then visit community gardens, a bee farm, a pollinator hot spot, bioswales, a solar microgrid and a public school green roof, among others, before ending in grand fashion in what’s left of East River Park with a ceremonial “river cleansing.”
The event celebrates local climate solutions in an 11-mile-long procession through the East Village and Lower East Side. Participants will visit 20 sustainability sites during the parade, with performances of music, dance, theater and poetry.
“These are climate solutions that exist between the gardens, the neighborhood and the waterfront,” Young said.
New Yorkers are encouraged to volunteer for some of the various roles in the pageant, such as costume-wearers, puppeteers, dancers and more. Participants will not only receive an outlet for self-expression but also spread awareness of climate change implications that directly affect their community.
“The arts provide this bridge to connect emotionally in a deeper understanding,” Young said. “It’s different than just reading facts about climate change when you’re actually involved and creating through the arts.”
For more information on Ecological City and to sign up and volunteer, click here.
For full route and performance details, click here.