Family event to combine food, fun and learning about climate change

NAPLES — The Finger Lakes is home to leading institutions tracking, researching and teaching about climate change — think Finger Lakes Institute at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva and Cornell University in Ithaca.

In Naples, a citizens group has taken up the cause by planning an afternoon of activities at Naples Community Park.

The May 6 event, called "Summit in the Valley: Creating Climate Connections," will be for the entire family with games and demonstrations. Organizers booked a diverse group of representatives from public and private organizations and businesses, as well as educators and scientists. Organizer Annie Almekinder said informational booths, activities, and speakers “will allow members of the community to become more informed on the local impacts of a changing climate.”

The event from noon to 3 p.m. will also include live music and a barbecue food truck. A digital scavenger hunt for all ages will challenge players to track down information using their smartphones. Almekinder said the game will use the GooseChase app with players finding missions and earning points as they visit booths to take photos and videos of what they learn.

More than a dozen speakers and presenters are booked for the event. They include representatives of local renewable energy companies, wineries, farms, composting projects, Naples Central School groups, Ontario County Soil and Water Conservation District, The Nature Conservancy, Cumming Nature Center and state Department of Environmental Conservation.

Keynote speakers will include Robert Putney from Impact Earth to share how people can have a zero waste process for their trash, and Meghan Webster with Ontario County Soil and Water to explain nutrient runoff and how to build rain gardens and vernal pools to improve the water quality of the Finger Lakes. Maura Sullivan from Finger Lakes Community College will connect how climate change information and Citizen Science projects help scientists collect the big data they need to find trends and shifts in animal and insect populations.


If you go

WHAT Summit in the Valley: Creating Climate Connections

WHEN Saturday, May 6, noon to 3 p.m.

WHERE Naples Community Park, Route 245, Naples

DETAILS Family event to learn about the effects of climate change in the community; demonstrations, speakers, information booths and activities include a digital scavenger hunt. Midnight Smoking BBQ food truck and local musicians Jason Almekinder, Brian D Burley, Scott Calpin and Aaron Lipp will offer food and entertainment.

INFO Contact Annie Almekinder at 585-704-6653