April. The month that includes…opening day for baseball…the final four and National Champs…maybe a fresh, local strawberry…AND…Earth Day. Yes! Earth Day (always April 22) began in 1970 when Gaylord Nelson, a senator from Wisconsin, wanted to bring attention to the environment (particularly air and water pollution) after a horrible oil spill off the coast of California.
The idea quickly became a national movement and is credited with the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts. In 1990, Earth Day went global; and in 1995 Senator Nelson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom (the highest honor given to civilians in the US).
As we plan to celebrate Earth Week and Earth Day, and what we can do to protect our natural resources through our menus, practices, programs, this article highlights another aspect of green — that is, *being in* green spaces. Take a walk in a park or simply sit in a chair and gaze at nature. It’s scientifically proven to reduce stress. And, though a study has not been done on this, all evidence points to the fact that mother nature gets a major kick out of having you.