The Successes of the Earth Day Celebration in St. Vartan Park

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

By: Lola Horowitz

The Successes of the Earth Day Celebration in St. Vartan Park

On Saturday, April 30th, over one hundred members of the Murray Hill community celebrated Earth Day at St. Vartan Park. For his second year, David Sall—the founder of the Earth Day Celebration in Murray Hill—brought together the Department of Sanitation, Carlina Rivera’s office, Council Member Keith Powers' office, Community Board 6, The Murray Hill Neighborhood Association, Alliance for Kips Bay, NYC Parks Department, KP Karate, the River School, PS 116, P94, District 75, and other nonprofits to work together in beautifying the neighborhood and educating their youth. 

Before the activities began, families indulged in bagels donated by Fairway, hydrated with Boxed Water, and were offered discounts by local restaurants supporting the event including Hill and Bay, Wattle Cafe, El Rio Grande, Sarges, Jackson Hole, and Bare Burger.

The Murray Hill Neighborhood Association’s Green & Clean team of volunteers organized the cleanup activity. They created a color-coded poster and distributed stickers representing zones to clean. Cleaning supplies were donated by Trader Joe’s, the MHNA and Home Depot.

The poster detailing color-coded blocks, which were assigned to each volunteer for cleanup. 

The morning started with families gathering around and listening as David Sall discussed the importance of Earth Day with the enthused children. He made announcements about the new bin for recycled electronics, Soles for Soles used shoe donation, the opening of the St. Vartan Garden, and the creation of the Give a Book, Take a Book library funded and built by local students. KP Karate led an energizing warmup before families set off to pick up trash with Trader Joe’s bags and equipment donated by The Home Depot.

David Sall making the morning announcements to the Earth Day volunteers before the cleanup began.
Trash grabbers donated by The Home Depot

Alongside the clean-up effort, children engaged in relay races, chalking, educational lessons, raffles, and a planting project with the River School’s Green Team where children recycled their Boxed Water containers as planters. Nearby, the Department of Sanitation held a table with information about composting and the Brown Bin Program. 

Representative from the Department of Sanitation explaining the process of composting.  

The event was an absolute success, creating awareness for families on what they could do to better their community and planting the seed of environmental justice in the young generation's minds. 

Earth Day commemoration chalk art in St. Vartan Park.


About the author: Lola Horowitz is a sixteen-year-old student journalist and young novelist with a passion for acting and writing. 

Photo (top) Children receiving soil into their recycled Boxed Water for the planting project. All photos by Lola Horowitz.