Earth Day began on April 22, 1970 to channel human energy toward environmental issues. Today, the Earth Day network spreads across 196 countries, working with more than 50,000 partners, worldwide.

Here in Hampton Roads in 2016, many communities joined in the celebration with activities developed to help raise awareness about the world we live in and what we can do to help save it from disaster. Here is a sampling of some of those events by community:

Newport News—The Virginia Living Museum sponsored an Earth Day event that included special activities, guest, displays and information about conservation efforts, as well as Earth-friendly vendors. They also collected used batteries, books, cell phones and old sneakers for recycling.

Portsmouth—Participants were invited for a Spring Tree Walk at Hoffler Creek, where area forester, Mike Aherron, provided a guided tour of the Preserve, pointing out some of the spring bloomers and discussing the importance of native plants.

Norfolk—The “Keep Norfolk Beautiful” organization had several activities for Earth Day, including an Earth Day happy hour, tours of a “green-built” home, a neighborhood cleanup day, a scavenger hunt, and a “greening of Ghent” party.

Virginia Beach—Mount Trashmore was host to Earth Day Celebration, which invited attendees to refresh their approach to making our world a better place with various exhibits, displays, and activities that explored effective ways for people to live greener lifestyles.

Suffolk—An “Earth Month Recycling Drive” was held on Earth Day at Bennett’s Creek Park to allow people to bring old tires, electronics, alkaline batteries, glass and paper products. There was also on-site shredding. In addition 15 public schools in the area were vying for top honors in a plastic bag recycling drive. The contest ran from last November until April 22.

For Bay Recycling and Disposal, every day is Earth Day. We’re proud to serve all of the communities of Hampton Roads who participated in this important effort.