Today, Bader is still pushing the idea that anybody can help the
environment. That theme was one of many at the 12th annual Earth Day
Celebration that took place Saturday at Shellmaker Island near the
Newport Beach Back Bay.
About 1,000 people braved the chilly, windy weather to come to the
free event, which was hosted by the Newport Bay Naturalists and Friends;
the Orange County Harbors, Beaches and Parks; and the California
Department of Fish and Game.
This year, Ocean Discovery Day was combined with Earth Day, a
nationally recognized event that began in 1970 as a way of raising
awareness about environmental responsibility. Earth Day will be
celebrated across the nation today.
"Anybody can help the environment," said Bader, as his wife, Elizabeth
Edwards, danced around in a bright green can with the words, "Anybody
Can" printed on it.
"I dream . . . of a time when the next generation doesn't have to fear
going into the water," he said. "I think the words 'Earth Day' are in
association with something that people crave. They want to know what to
Patty Leedom-Martin is one person who said she definitely wants to
help the environment. She has been bringing her family to the Earth Day
celebration in Newport Beach for six years because she feels that they
are learning something valuable while having a good time.
"I like the touch tanks because I get to touch the animals," said
8-year-old Summer Cook, Leedom-Martin's niece. "And when we come here, we
learn not to put trash in the ocean because the animals will die."
The touch tanks were only one highlight of the celebration, whose
official theme was "Living on Our Ocean Planet. The Ocean Begins at Your
Front Door." There was also grunion egg hatching, bird watching, power
boat tours of the Back Bay, a band and craft booths. The Marine Studies
Center on Shellmaker Island was also introduced, and earlier in the day,
a 13-mile Bike the Back Bay bike ride took place.
"It was a good ride," said Kristin Wood of Irvine, just after she and
friend Janet Price of Hollywood had finished event. "First it was rainy,
then it was windy, then sunny. It's a good cause to come out here. We're