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Poppies salute Earth Day here on the Peninsula

by Linda Hubbard Gulker on April 22, 2014

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Menlo Park photographer Frances Freyberg captured these poppies on a training run along Skyline last weekend. We think this native plant, which adds a cheery note to many local gardens, is the perfect vehicle for commemorating  Earth Day on its 45th anniversary.

According the the Cal Gov website, Earth Day was conceived in 1969 by Sen. Gaylord Nelson, D-Wisconsin, and his assistant Dennis Hayes, after a trip they took to Santa Barbara following the devastating oil spill off the Southern California coast. According to legend, the men were so outraged by what they saw that upon returning to Washington, D.C., Nelson introduced a bill designating April 22 as a national day to celebrate the Earth. The date was chosen to help commemorate the birth of famed naturalist and conservationist John Muir, who was born on April 21, 1838.

It’s estimated that 20 million Americans participated in the first Earth Day in 1970. By the year 2000, formal events celebrating Earth Day were being observed in 184 countries, and more than 500 million people participated in those events.

Photo by Frances Freyberg

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