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Celebrate Earth Day

On the Saturday closest to Earth Day in April, Gateway celebrates our environment with displays, workshops, hands-on activities for people of all ages, and other environment-related activities. The event, started on Gateway's Kenosha Campus in 2008, was extended to the Elkhorn Campus in 2012. Hundreds of community members visit the Gateway campuses to learn and show their support for our environment. The 2019 Celebrate Earth Day event will be held on April 13 on the Kenosha and Elkhorn Campuses. 

Below is information for the 2018 event. Please check back for updates.

Kenosha Campus Details | Elkhorn Campus Details

To host an environmentally oriented exhibit or sell your "green products", please register for the Campus event of your choice.

Each Campus event is coordinated by a local committee, often comprised of Gateway staff, students, and community members. We encourage you to visit each campus to enjoy their unique offerings of education, hands-on activities, and entertainment.

Each campus will feature different offerings.

Kenosha Campus

3520 30th Ave. Kenosha
Overall event time is 10:00 am - 2:00 pm (creek clean up begins at 8:45)

On the grounds:

Pike Creek Clean Up 8:45 - 10:00 am. Meet at the Pike Creek Horticulture Center for a brief 15-minute discussion about clean up goals and head out back of the building to Pike Creek to remove trash from the creek bed.Following the clean up, volunteers will come together at the Pike Creek Center to reflect on what they've learned and how they can personally make a positive impact on the environment. Volunteers will receive a certificate acknowledging their involvement.

Gateway Alumni Breakfast  Join fellow Gateway Alumni in an informal breakfast gathering during Celebrate Earth Day from 10:00-11:30 am.  In room T-130, in the midst of Celebrate Earth Day activity stop by to say hello and learn about Gateway's rapidly expanding Alumni Association along with breakfast. Drawing at 11:00 for an 11:30 horse and wagon ride.

A Children's Tree Climb.  10:00 am - 2:00 pm (weather permitting) Guided by Arboriculture and Urban Forestry experts from Gateway's new Associate Degree program and hosted by the Wisconsin Arborist Association, children will be harnessed into professional tree climbing safety gear and hoisted into the more than 200 year old Oak tree on the west side of Campus, up the hill towards the Center for Sustainable Living.

Horse and Wagon Rides: 10:00 am - 2:00 pm. Free Horse and 12-person wagon rides (wagon will be covered!) are offered on a first-come, first-served basis by Black Tie Carriage Service. Pick up at Pike Creek Horticulture Center. 

Green Vehicles—Located outside (weather permitting) next to the Kenosha Conference Center (in front of the Solar Tracker).

  • Truck cab rides for children. Take a short spin in the Gateway parking lot in the cab of a clean diesel vehicle.
  • Ask the expert. Receive tips and advise on how you can keep your vehicle operating better and pollute less. You can be more green with some simple maintenance and periodic checks. Learn how to check your air filter, tire pressure,fluid levels, and the importance of taking your vehicle in for regular maintenance. I will also talk about how doing all of these things will make your car run better and pollute less.
  • Alternative vehicle info. Learn about the differences and advantages to Hybrids, Electric vehicles, and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG).
  • Several alternative energy vehicles will be on display along with a Snap-on tool box

Electronics Recycling --Drive up/ Drop-off. SOUTH entrance to campus and drive west to Technical Building south entrance-watch for signs Electronics recycling will be coordinated by the information technology students of Gateway Technical College and the services of a professional recycling firm, CasBro Recycling. All electronics can be driven directly to the truck located at the south entrance to the Technical Building. Student volunteers and recycling company representatives will assist you by destroying personal information/your hard drive before recycling.Click through to the CasBro website (link is external) for a list of items CasBro will accept. This year, NO televisions will be accepted.

Center for Sustainable Living:  Visit the eco-friendly house, environmental Nature Discovery trail,  and fabulous kids' activities in the barn.  This year's educational focus is Pollinators: Bees, Bats, and Butterflies.  View demonstration projects for Gateway's Sustainable Energy Systems programs--Come see the wind spire, photovoltaic installations, solar hot water, and geothermal HVAC system.  Bird walks will be conducted by Hoy Audubon's Rick Fare throughout the day. Visit tiny creatures visiting from Bong Recreation Area. And enjoy a visit inside the Bat Cave.

Note: UW-Parkside shuttle bus will drive visitors between the Technical Building, Pike Creek Horticulture Building and the Center for Sustainable Living—all located on the Kenosha Campus. A short, pleasant walk when the weather cooperates.

Food:   Refreshments will be offered for purchase by De La Rosa's food truck.  Look for them parked outside of the north entrance to the Technical building.

Pike Creek Horticulture Center

Free compost provided by the city of Kenosha will be available for pick up in the parking lot across the drive from the center.

8:45—10:00 Pike Creek Clean up—Invasive Species information followed by clean up. Gloves and bags will be provided. All welcome.

Pike Creek Center event components 10:00 am - 2:00 pm

Demonstrations: Composting and Vermicomposting.  Inside the Center look for information displays and a host of experts happy to answer your questions.

Horticulture industry exhibitors:

  • Gateway Technical College Urban Farm
  • Gateway Horticulture--Alternative Grow Methods including: Aeroponic Grow Tower, Dutch Bucket Hydroponic system, circular grow tower
  • Farm Fresh Atlas of Southeastern Wisconsin, Inc.
  • Bee keeping--The Racine Kenosha Beekeeper's Association will have an observation hive and answer questions about beekeeping
  • Student Association of International Floral Design (SAID)
  • Great River & Lakes Permaculture
  • Hawthorn Hollow arboretum and nature center
  • Lemon Street Gallery will be linking member artists' work with plants and arrangements from the Pike Creek Center's Greenhouse
  • Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network (WIN) and Respect Our Waters Learn tips for things you can do on our own property to reduce stormwater runoff pollution.  Free rain barrel raffle. 

Hands-on activities in the Urban Farm Lab:  GEO-pet creation—Ideal for kids.
Mini Terrariums. Purchase materials onsite, create your own mini terrarium and take it home with you.

Resource Center: Let Gateway’s Horticulture Experts provide the answers you need. Topics include ridding your garden of common pests, proper planting tips, plant identification, and more. Come with your gardening questions. 

Plant Sale: Perennials, natives, cool season annuals, vegetables, and herbs (garage behind the green houses)

Free trees: Free oak tree bare-root saplings will be provided to visitors.

Technical Building

Information and Demonstration Exhibitors.  

Bedi, Ajay  Artist and activist Ajay Bedi  shares his eco-themed art and seeds harvested last year.  

Bigalke, Melody. Artist Melody Bigalke shows how she creates beautiful art and containers from gourds

Chiwaukee Prairie Preservation Fund  Learn about prairie preservation, restoration and management

Clean Power Coalition  Learn about possible effects of coal-fired energy generation on health and clean energy alternatives.

Crafts She Made  Items from found objects: Glass marble magnets, flattened bottle cap keychains, cement memo holder.

Dress for Success program of YWCA Southeast Wisconsin Models will be walking the halls of Celebrate Earth Day showing the high quality clothing that can be found in resale shops.

Earthwise Oils & Dragonfly Soap Works  Plant-based products for home and personal use.

EM's Magical Treasures  Recycled and Upcycled items for sale. Girl Scouts to do demonstrations of upcycling crafts

GrapeTwine Creations  View samples of jewelry made with grape vines, peppels and more

Hoy Audobon Society Hoy will be educating the public about enjoying both migratory and backyard birds. Don't forget to visit the Center for Sustainable Living today for bird hikes led by Hoy Audobon expert Rick Fare.

InSinkErator  As communities deal with the shortage of landfill space, InsinkErator will discuss how food waste can be disposed of in an environmentally friendly way.

Kenosha Bicycle Ambassadors / Working Bike Cooperative Cure Cabin Fever with a spring bike ride! Visit the Kenosha Bicycle Ambassador booth. Kids turn their pedal power into electricity. Plan your spring ride with the latest bike trail information for Kenosha and Kenosha County. 

Kenosha Community Sailing Center  Learn about the power and joy of Lake Michigan--our great natural resource--through the sailing program

Kenosha Public Library  Come see why the Public Library is the ultimate place to reduce and reuse! Create a nature-pressing pendant.

Kenosha Public Museum  All about Bats!  Learn why bats are important to the environment through hands-on activities. Snap a photo with  "Batty"; 

Kenosha Water Utility. Promoting the high quality of Kenosha water (vs. buying bottled water); proper disposal of household hazardous waste; water production process and more. Please see our water tap display outdoors across from Pike Creek Horticulture center and enjoy some of the best water to be had in the world.

LakeView Technology Academy Environmental Club.  The club will have three booths of information:  Recyclable materials will be outlined through a presentation board and a participatory game; Students will explain their desalinator and why it is important; and they will discuss the importance of bees in our environment.

Mahone Middle School Eco Club - 6th 7th, and 8th grade students demonstrate how easy it is to repurpose old household items  into games (and you get to PLAY), items repurposed for crafts, and plant seeds.

Mahone Middle School Generosity Club--Did you know that butterflies tell scientist that and ecosystem and environment is healthy? Visit to learn some facts about butterflies while creating a gift to take home. Come stop by and meet some amazing middle school students who will showyou how to make the coolest butterfly ever!

Mahone Middle School Performing Arts--Student perform a short pollinator puppet show every half hour in Room T-127 (the kids activity room)

Mahone STEM Club: This year students will share what they are learning about alternative forms of energy to generate power.

Norwex  The power to clean without powerful or harmful chemicals.

Pillow Thoughts.  Learn about a  book called Pillow Thoughts.  It is a journal that encourages parents and children to communicate to each other through written words.

Pressed Creations Display of 90% recycled insect & flower crafts. Encouraging and educating visitors on the importance of milkweed propagation in yards & gardens, offering free seeds.

Prime My Body Understanding and purchase of essential oils including Grapeseed oil

Pringle Nature Center, Inc. Information about Pringle facilities and educational programs, located in Bristol Woods County Park. They will be distributing tree saplings while supplies last.

Relay for Life-Kenosha  Purchase Solar Dancers.  Proceeds go to the American Cancer Society

Rubekia Press. Artists Lisa and Becky show how they reuse materials to create handbound books and handbags and will offer printing demonstrations.

Sierra Club-Southeast Gateway  The club offers environmental programs, outings, and is actively involved in local and regional environmental initiatives and actions.

Southeastern Wisconsin Solar Group Buy. Learn about the benefits of solar energy and how to save money when purchasing through a group buy program.

UW-Extension-Kenosha County / Master Gardeners. Social Networking in the garden.  The UW-Extension Master Gardener program

Wild Ones-Root River Chapter Wild Ones is a national organization that promotes environmentally sound landscaping practices to preserve biodiversity through the preservation, restoration, and establishment of native plant communities. We will have information about growing milkweed for monarchs and about our native plant sale in June.

Wildtree   grape seed oils, spices and spice blends.

Center for Sustainable Living

The Center for Sustainable Living and its grounds are available for touring from 10:00 am - 2:00 pm. Come see the wind spire, Solar Tracker, photovoltaic exterior lighting, geothermal installation, raised bed gardens, and walking path through a small natural prairie.

  • Geothermal, solar, and home efficiency products
  • Sustainable products and new displays, come see how to make your home more sustainable! 
  • Video presentation of the entries in the 2016 Kenosha Unified Celebrate Earth Day Poster Contest (awards at Noon in the barn)

Center’s Barn and Surrounding Area

In barn:

  • Bong Recreational Center animals. Several smaller animals from the center will be on hand for visitors to view, including turtles, salamanders and frogs. Bong volunteers will be available to talk about the animals and answer any questions.
  • Be a bat! Explore a bat cave and try to catch the same food as bats would eat. Bats are also great pollinators.
  • What's the buzz? Play some games and hand-on activities to find out what makes bees go buzz.
  • Beekeeper. See the equipment of a bee keeper, who will be on hand to answer any questions.
  • Drawing contest. Draw a picture of a pollinator, a bat, bee or butterfly. All posters will be featured on Gateway's Web site after the event, and a prize awarded to one lucky entrant.
  • Bong Recreational Center animals. Several smaller animals from the center will be on hand for visitors to view, including turtles, salamanders and frogs. Bong volunteers will be available to talk about the animals and answer any questions.
  • Animals that live in trees. A hands-on activity that show the variety of animals that live in a tree. What’s that bird? Audubon Society president Rick Fare will lead bird walks for visitors of all ages, starting at the barn area every half hour.
  • What's in the woods and field? And how do I find it? Mahone Middle School students lead visitors of all ages on a walk through the nature trail on the grounds of the Center for Sustainable Living.

Children’s Activities

Technical Building-RoomT-123-127 

  • Hands-on projects & activities for participants including planting seedlings, making eco pots from newspaper to plant seeds, make a seed viewer to take home, make pinecone bird feeders, and create art with treasures found in nature.​
  • Mahone Middle School Performing Arts Club will perform a short puppet show on the half hour.
  • Mahone Middle School Eco Club work with children to make recycled crafts
  • Technical Building/ Service Building Intersection.  The Kenosha Public Museum--All about Bats!  Learn why bats are important to the environment through hands-on activities. Snap a photo with  "Batty"; 
  • Kids pedal power—generate electricity by pedaling a bike (also at intersection of Tech building and Service)

Center for Sustainable Living (up the hill - in the barn)

 A Children's Tree Climb.  10:00 am - 2:00 pm (weather permitting) Guided by Arboriculture and Urban Forestry experts from Gateway's new Associate Degree program and coordinated by the Wisconsin Arborist Association, children will be harnessed into professional tree climbing safety gear and hoisted into the more than 200 year old Oak tree on the west side of Campus, up the hill towards the Center for Sustainable Living.

Pike Creek Horticulture Center:  GEO-pet creation—Ideal for kids

Special Thanks!

Special Thanks to Snap-on Incorporated for their continued support of Celebrate Earth Day.

Thank you Mahone Middle School for their dedicated students sharing their environmental knowledge and volunteer assistance

Thank you Whyte family for providing crafts and volunteers for the children’s area-Technical Building

Thank you Colony family for providing educational activities for children in the barn at the Center or Sustainable Living

Elkhorn Campus

400 Hwy H, Elkhorn
10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.; White River Trail clean-up 8:30 - 10:00 a.m.
Elkhorn Facebook event page

Check back often - we are adding new vendors, workshops, and activities weekly.

Join us for a day of FREE family fun!

Enjoy: Food, Entertainment and Fun!

  • Earth Day Scavenger Hunt​
  • Kohl's Wild Theater
  • Petting Zoo
  • Kid's Crafts
  • Kids' Outdoor Fitness Challenge
  • Refreshments for Purchase
  • Gateway Alumni Cake Reception at 1:00 p.m.
  • Door Prizes and Giveaways, including bare-root Oak tree saplings

White River Trail Clean-up:  8:30-10:00

Get involved! Join the Walworth County Volunteer Services as we clean up the White River Bike Trail on County Highway H from 8:30 - 10 a.m. Meet at the White River Bike Trail head on Hwy H south of the Gateway Campus. Over the winter much debris had found it's way into the woods on each side of the trail and it really needs to be spruced up. What a great way to start an Earth Day celebration, by making the area beautiful again. Bags and gloves will be provided. Any age is welcome, children 14 and under must be accompanied by parent or guardian. Guests can park in the southeast parking lot at the Gateway Technical College campus and walk to the trail if space is limited. 

Special Alumni Cake Reception, 1pm - South Building, Room 128

Come meet your Alumni Association and learn more about benefits. Free membership. Gift drawing (including a Spring Basket from Gateway Horticulture)

Plant Sale

Get a head start on your summer planting! ~Gateway Horticulture Program

Nature Discovery Trail Hike

Exploring our Earth! Come and discover the nature trail at Gateway Technical College. Walk through this self-guided tour, and learn about the native plants and animals that call it home. Fun activity for the whole family.


Learn: How to be more environmentally conscious

Workshops & Demonstrations




Solar 101! Steve Johnson. Come learn the basics of solar energy

10:30 a.m. South Building, rm. 139
Kohl's Wild Theater / Zoological Society of Milwaukee County: The Chronicles of Detective Appletree Come help Detective Appletree solve two mysteries in Wisconsin – “the Mysterious Case of the Disappearing Bees,”  AND “The Strange Case of the Alien Invasion.”  Learn about the critical role bees play in Wisconsin agriculture, and what we can do stop the spread of invasive species in our natural habitats.  Concepts presented include pollination, habitats, invasive species, and more! Most appropriate for grades 1-5 and families with children of all ages.  No live animals are featured in show. 11 a.m. & 12:15 p.m. South building--Student Commons area
Bees and Our Ecosystem! Stephanie Slater. The bees are so important to our ecosystem.  Come discover more about our critical relationship and ways you can help in their survival.    11:30 a.m. South building, rm. 139
Chemical Free Cleaning! Joan Seye-Pyle. Want a clean home without using harmful chemicals?.  Come learn how you can maintain a clean home using essential oils.   12:30 p.m. South building, rm. 139
Kids' Fitness Challenge: Calling all Kids!!  Test your skills and agility at our outdoor fitness challenge. Prizes for everyone! Ongoing Outside 
Car Care Workshop: Justin Hoffman, Gateway Technical College. Help keep your car operating in the most environmentally friendly way possible. Ongoing Outside 

Shop the Green/Farmers Market

Norwex: Discover the impact that Norwex microfiber and backlock technology can have on the earth and our own overall well being by radically reducing the chemicals we use to clean our homes and our bodies! With Norwex it is possible to clean with the one of a kind microfiber with backlock technology and WATER! Some of the materials are made with up to 70% recycled materials allowing us to improve the condition of our beloved planet! 

Friends on the Square:  A local favorite! Delicious coffees and teas available for purchase. 

Informational Booths

Lakeland Animal Shelter: Dogs and cats ready for adoption (if the weather is warm enough), and items with shelter logo to sell. Our mission is to enrich the lives of both animals and people throughout our community.

Citizen's Climate Lobby: Learn how you can help get a carbon tax passed through Congress, write letters to their members of Congress and communicate about climate change solutions effectively.

Gateway's Sustainable Student Club: Learn about Sustainable Living.

Focus on Energy: Focus on Energy is the statewide energy efficiency program. Focus on Energy empowers the people and businesses of Wisconsin to make smart energy decisions with enduring economic benefits.  Since 2001, Wisconsin’s energy efficiency and renewable resource program has stayed true to that mission statement.

Wild Ones - Kettle Moraine Chapter: Want to attract butterflies to your yard? Come learn through pictures and information, with a special emphasis on the monarch butterfly.

Lakeland Audubon Society:  Learn about the Lakeland Audubon Society; a local chapter of the National Audubon Society. Our organization promotes learning about wildlife, nature and environmental issues. We also advocate for the conservation of birds and biodiversity. One of our main principles is viewing birds as a litmus scale for the overall health of the environment and our own wellbeing, "Where Birds Thrive People Thrive".

Ice Age Trail Alliance-Walworth/Jefferson County Chapter: Discover the wonders of the Ice Age Trail – a thousand-mile footpath that highlights one of the world’s finest examples of how continental glaciation sculpts our planet.

Walworth County Farm Bureau: Come learn about our dairy partners and how to make homemade butter and plant seeds!  Great Kid’s Activities!!!

Explore our Community:  Stop by and visit with the United Way and the Elkhorn Chamber of Commerce to discover all the wonderful things Elkhorn and Walworth County has to offer.

Walworth County Beekeeper's Club:  Learn about the critical role of bees in our ecosystem.  

Buy food, art and products that are made from recycled, or reused materials or in a more earth-friendly way.

Dale Garden Gass: Artist repurposing glass items to make into garden flowers

Diane Bauman: Plants for sale; indoor and outdoor plants

Gateway Welding Club: Welding recycled metals and items for art and useful items

Pheasant Run Farmers Market: Selling fossils, minerals and geodes.

Quednow's Heirloom Apple Orchard: Displaying information on natural grown apples (fruit) and giving back to the environment. Selling dried apple chips/cider/apple sauce 

Sweet Delight Kettle Corn: Fresh-popped kettle corn, caramel corn, and maple kettle corn.

Whimsy KITCH: Wonderful upcycled wind chimes. All wind chimes made from repurposed kitchenalia. Lovely vintage silver spoons dangle in the breeze from assorted kitchen items.

L'Bri Pure n' Natural: Ingredients matter! It only takes 26 second for whatever you put on your skin to get absorbed into your bloodstream and organs. Lean what ingredients to avoid when selecting skin & body care products for yourself & your family.

Roth Ranch LLC: Local honey for sale

"Essentially You" with Young Living Essential Oils: The vendor will display Young Living essential oils.  These therapeutic grade oils are produced with a "Seed to Seal"® guarantee, which means that the plant materials for the oils are harvested from organic fields, and distilled without harmful chemicals.  These products are used to promote wellness and a chemical-free lifestyle. 

Green’s Friendship Acres, LLC: Goat’s Milk soaps, lotion bars and other natural spa products made locally in small batches using only top quality natural ingredients. Other upcycled treasures will also be available for purchase.  From Small Friendship Tokens and Plate Flowers to larger Bed Benches and Garden Chairs.

Garden of Eden Kingdom Living: We promoted healthy eating and healthy eating, with our all natural products, we go green, we only used glass for our products

Etcetera: Handcrafted upcycling including home decor, jewelry, glass etching, and garden art

ABCDfarmhouse, LLC.: I make and sell handmade soaps, bathbombs, lip balms, lotions, soap dishes, and linen sprays

A Glass of Art & More: Come learn about different workshops using reclaimed materials., with a little demonstration of each.

SueSkis Worm Farm:  Learn about organic worm castings fertilizer; bags will be available for sale

Dubin Dogs:  Hot dogs available for purchase

Sweet Somethings:  Baked goods, coffee, wraps, salads, and more available for purchase

Recycle Center

Drop off your recyclable items and help the planet!!

Electronics Recycling: Electronics recycling will be coordinated by the information technology students of Gateway Technical College and the services of a professional recycling firm, CasBro Recycling. All electronics can be driven directly to the truck at the campus parking lot. Student volunteers and recycling company representatives will assist you by destroying personal information/your hard drive before recycling.Click through to the CasBro website for a list of items CasBro will accept. All items are free; please note tvs, monitors will not be collected

Prescription Eye Glasses and Baseball Hats: Recycle for Sight, East Troy Lion's Club

Tennis Shoes: Converse grinds down worn out athletic shoes and turns them into new places to play, such as tracks and gym floors.


Get your creative juices flowing with fun children's activities

  • Earth friendly crafts
  • Plant flowers for Mother's Day
  • Make bird feeders

Musical Group - Un-Hich'd

Unhich'd is a pop / country / rock duo composed of singer/songwriter and guitarist, Scott Huffman and singer/songwriter, Jessie Young. 

And more…


THANK YOU for sponsoring the Elkhorn campus Celebrate Earth Day event!

Snap-On Incorporated
Educator's Credit Union
Clear Water Outdoor​