Old Town Celebrates Earth Day & New Area

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Old Town Volunteer
Alyna, a local Target-employee volunteer, looks for invasive species to remove from the area in Old Town. Photo: A.L. Haynes

In celebration of Earth Day 2022, San Diego’s Historic Old Town State Park hosted a climate resilience fair in its new Land of The First People (Iipay-Tipai Kumeyaay Mut Niihepok) area. Filled with plant life indigenous to San Diego, the day began with teams of volunteers clearing invasive species such as grass and dandelions from the area.

By A.L. Haynes, Contributing Writer

Tribal representatives from both the Viejas and Sycuan groups sang songs and danced in celebration of Earth. A booth hosted by the San Diego River Park Foundation demonstrated the importance of local rivers even now, as well as giving kids a chance to create wildflower seed bombs. Enthusiastic graduate students with Scripps Institution of Oceanography showed off an Argo probe, which measures salinity, temperature, and more in the ocean.

Tribal representatives presenting traditional songs. Photo: A.L. Haynes

Thousands of the probes have been supplied for free and released globally to track international ocean health, vital not only for San Diego’s famous beaches, but also for seafood, certain crops, and potential drought solutions. A display and historical walkthrough of how indigenous people harvested local acorns and processed them into meal for cereal and flour for bread linked modern climate resilience to historic sustainable practices. The day was an informative part of a walk through the park.

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