The following information has been provided by the Aquidneck Island Earth Week 2020 committee.

Each year, Earth Day falls on April 22. Earth Day was founded in 1970 and is celebrated by over 190 countries. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, honoring environmental activism, stewardship and sustainability efforts worldwide. 

To mark this event, the Aquidneck Island Earth Week Committee has been planning a week-long community celebration to take place during the week of April 18 through April 25. To align with Rhode Island’s stay-at-home order, all activities will be based on things that individuals and families can do online, at home or in their backyards. 

The public is invited to participate in a variety of family-friendly programs that support environmental stewardship, awareness, and sustainability. By coming together and offering a full week of programming, partners hope to amplify each other’s efforts and highlight our connection with each other and with the natural world.

The Aquidneck Island Earth Week Committee formed in 2019 and is working in collaboration with over thirty local environmental organizations, schools and committees. Partners include Clean Ocean Access, Norman Bird Sanctuary,  U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Aquidneck Land Trust, Bike Newport, The Aquidneck Island Intertribal Indian Council, Newport Film, Newport Art Museum, Aquidneck Community Table, Save the Bay, Newport Tree Conservancy, and Middletown’s Open Space & Fields Committee and Tree Commission. Additionally, Council members from Newport, Middletown and Portsmouth have passed resolutions to support Earth Week initiatives and unify efforts across the Island. 

Aquidneck Island Earth Week is an invitation to the entire community to celebrate environmental protection and our connection with nature. Plans include live-streamed events and environmental activities that individuals, students and families can do from home. This includes a Virtual Student Showcase with environmentally-themed project ideas that students can design and create at home over the next two weeks. Additionally, the Greenlove Foundation will announce the name of a local organization that has been chosen as the recipient of a new water bottle filling station. Dates and times will be announced on the Aquidneck Island Earth Week website. 

Please note that all programs are subject to change given the evolving situation with the pandemic. Stay tuned for upcoming events at the Aquidneck Island Earth Week website: https://tinyurl.com/rqwfyz7 and be sure to follow the Aquidneck Island Earth Week on Facebook: www.facebook.com/Aquidneck-Island-Earth-Week-110573710533017/In honor of the 50th birthday of Earth Day, let us all consider how this moment is a reminder of our connections with each other and with the planet.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. Although not the founder or original owner, Belmore has been with What'sUpNewp since its early beginnings in 2012.

Belmore was born in Providence, Rhode Island; grew up and graduated high school in Coventry, Rhode Island; and lived in Newport, Rhode Island for more than ten years. He currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals.

He and his wife, Jen, as well as their two dogs (Aero and June), recently moved to Alexandria, Virginia. Belmore travels back and forth to Newport every couple of weeks to cover events, work on story ideas, to meet with What'sUpNewp's on-the-ground contributors, to visit friends, and to eat as much seafood as possible.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.