West Wind Island Resort on Sanibel is the nearest Sanibel beach resort to J.N “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge, which Arthur Frommer indicated was a major rason for him naming Sanibel Island as his #! vacation destination in the world.
That puts you, as a TRUE SANIBEL guest of West Wind Island Resort, as close as you can get for this year’s Earth Day Celebration at Ding Darling on Saturday, April 21, 2012.
It celebrates Earth Day’s 42nd anniversary and it is being staged in partnership with “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge and Tarpon Bay Explorers.

There will be a range of activities for all ages, from how to “plarn,” making yarn out of those pesky plastic bags to a guest appearance of “Bagzilla,” the disposable bag-costumed character. Plarn is yarn made from plastic bags, which can then be woven into your own sturdier reusable shopping bags.

Here’s a schedule of activities:

7 a.m. – 4 p.m. Wildlife Drive is open free to bikers and hikers
8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Free bike rentals from Tarpon Bay Explorers’ site (returns by 6 p.m.)
10 a.m. – The first 200 visitors to the Refuge will receive a FREE reusable shopping bag, courtesy of Ding Darling Wildlife Socierty.
10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Ongoing Earth Crafts in the Education Center Education Lab
• Make your own “Mother Earth” ornament
• Create a pop-bottle butterfly or jellyfish
• Learn from a pollinator and mind your own beeswax (candle that is)
• Create your own bracelet out of “plarn” (plastic bag yarn)
• Meet and greet refuge educator Bagzilla, costumed in a year’s worth of an average person’s disposable bag consumption
10-11 a.m. Guided Native Plant walk along Indigo Trail
11:30 a.m.-noon “Let’s Talk Trash” Marine Timeline Competition for Kids- How long does it take that trash to biodegrade in a marine environment? (Education Center Auditorium)
Lunch on your own
1:30-2 p.m. Climate Change 101 – Learn the basics of climate change and what you can do to help. (Education Center Auditorium)
2:30-3 p.m. Make Your Own Plarn- Plastic bag overload? Learn how to make “plarn” (plastic-bag yarn) and weave reusable shopping bags that are 10 times stronger than other plastic bags. (Education Center Auditorium)

For more information on Earth Day at the Refuge, call 239-472-1100 or visit the Ding Darling NWR online.

Will we see you there?