The Recycling Committee and the Recreation Commission of Townsend will present an Earth Day celebration on Townsend common on Saturday, April 29, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Rain date Sunday, April 30, noon to 4 p.m.)

Businesses and organizations concerned about the Earth will offer exhibits, booths and presentations. For example, Michele Cannon of Mother Earth Landscaping will speak on “Happy Worms, Healthy Lawns” and Alllied Waste (formerly BFI), who collect Townsend’s trash and recycling, will demonstrate how a combination truck works. (Apparently I’m not the only one who had the mistaken impression that my recycle bin was dumped in the same place as my trash.) At 8 a.m. volunteers will adopt and clean up Dudley Road, and bring back the trash for all to see.

There’s too much planned for Earth Day to mention here. Look for separate reports in this paper on new additions; for the complete list click the link in the “Announcements & Events” box on Booths are still available at no cost for non-profit groups and $10 for all others, but you must provide your own table. For more information call Recycling Committee chairman Irene Congdon at (978)597-9191; to rent booth space for more information or call Recreation Director Karen Clement at (978) 597-5914.

Three “free swaps” encourage anyone (from anywhere) to bring what you want to pass along, and take what you can use, whether you bring anything or not. Items to be swapped are:

Latex paint

Books — Any left at the end of the day go to a program available at the Transfer Station, which sends materials to programs in poverty-stricken areas worldwide for teaching people to read English. (Even outdated textbooks and technical manuals are useful; they can also use working videos and even audiotapes if the words are clear.)

Plants — Divided perennials, extra seedlings, houseplants, etc., all are welcome but especially less-common perennials. Bring plants anytime after 9 a.m. when Jock Snaith will be available to supervise until noon. You can’t take plants away until the bell in the Congregational Church steeple strikes ten, but time goes quickly in checking out arrivals. Please have plants potted, not just in clumps of earth. Until April 29, clean pots may be taken from — and left at — a supply behind town hall (on the right of the building as you approach from the parking lot); please stack them neatly. Mark each pot with the plant’s name (botanical or common), and if it can become invasive please note that too. For more information call Jock at (978) 597-8310.

© 2006 Catherine Holmes Clark