Latino Conservation Week in Utah includes stargazing, river cleanups and more

Artes de México Director Fanny Guadalupe Blauer gives a presentation “Sabores de Mi Patria: Food is Culture” in July 2021 as part of Latino Conservation Week. The presentation, along with a number of events, make up Utah’s Latin American Conservation Week this year. (Wasatch Community Gardens)

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SALT LAKE CITY — A week-long campaign to celebrate and expand Latino involvement in the outdoors and conservation efforts wraps up this week — but Utahns still have time to enjoy river cleanups, summer parties, and more. stargazing and more.

Latino Conservation Week, held July 16-24, is a national initiative with nearly 200 events taking place across the country.

“It’s just a week that shines a light on the incredible work of the Latin American community in outdoor spaces and also makes sure that we keep these spaces accessible to all types of people,” said Meisei Gonzalez, Director of communications from HEAL Utah, a non-profit organization sponsoring several Conservation Week events. .

“It’s also a time for us to learn how to get involved in local politics, how to get involved in reaching out to our legislators to make sure Latinos can always access the outside,” Gonzalez said.

A number of events in southern Utah and along the Wasatch Front have already taken place, and Gonzalez said there has been good community participation. For example, an outdoor gear swap had over 500 items donated and over 150 people showed up.

For Kimberly Yapias with Wasatch Community Gardens, the week also represents an opportunity to increase cultural knowledge in the area. The gardens, with Artes de México, organize a presentation on ancestral agricultural practices.

“One thing that’s hard if you’re from another country — you kind of lose access to special culture traditions that you might have grown up with,” Yapias said. “One of our goals is to bring that cultural appreciation and understanding back to people who already know it and haven’t had the chance or the space to really appreciate it, as well as people who don’t. maybe not and who wish to know more.”

Wasatch Front Events

Sabores de mi Patria – Food is Culture presentation, Thursday, July 21, 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., Wasatch Community Gardens in Salt Lake City

This presentation will explore a Mayan agricultural practice known as La Milpa. The practice involves a number of culturally significant foods – including corn, beans, squash and marigolds – that grow well together. The workshop will be entirely in Spanish with English translation. Wearing a mask is compulsory and registration is free. The presentation is the second in a three-part series. The last workshop will take place on September 22.

Night at the Aviary, Friday, July 22, 6-9 p.m., Tracy Aviary & Botanical Gardens in Salt Lake City

This evening evening will include visits to bird exhibits and artistic activities. Registration is free.

Dark Sky Event and Star Party, Friday, July 22, 9 p.m.-12 a.m., East Canyon State Park in Morgan

Participants can view galaxies, nebulae and other deep sky objects through powerful telescopes with the help of park staff and other volunteers. There is a $10 park entry fee per vehicle.

Jordan Cleansing and Meeting PlaceSaturday, July 23, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., 17th South Park in Salt Lake City

The Hartland Community 4 Youth & Families Environmental Stewardship Program is hosting a Jordan River Trail cleanup as well as food, drink and live music from Grupo Mantra.

Paddle the riverSaturday, July 23, 9:30-11:30 a.m. at the Jordan River Nature Center at Tracy Aviary in Salt Lake City.

The Tracy Aviary organizes a canoe trip along the Jordan River. Learn about environmental conservation and visit the Jordan River Nature Center. Registration is free and all materials are provided.

Southern Utah Events

Meet the Reptile Celebrities of Red CliffsFriday, July 22, 3 to 5:30 p.m., St. George Library

Tu-wee the Desert Tortoise, Charlie the Serpent King and Hercules the Gila Monster will be at the library taking pictures. Visitors can learn how to protect the desert environment where the trio of reptiles live, become a certified “Tortoise Defender” and play turtle trivia games. Registration is free.

Stroll along the Virgin RiverSaturday July 23, 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m., Sullivan Soccer Park in Washington

This 8km family bike ride will cover sections of the boardwalk along the Virgin River. The ride starts at Sullivan Soccer Park with free coffee and bagels and a talk about bike safety. Registration is free, and those who need to borrow a bike can contact Conserve Southwest Utah.

Estrellas Festival, Saturday, July 23, 9:30-11:30 p.m. Red Mountain Trailhead in St. George

The St. George Astronomy Group will teach participants about the galaxy through the use of a telescope. Registration is free.

Utah’s Latest Stories

Sydnee Gonzalez is a reporter for and covers minority communities. Dressed Spanish. You can find Sydnee at @sydnee_gonzalez on Twitter.

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