DISCOVERY BAY -- This year's Earth Day celebration in Discovery Bay on April 26 will not only be a time for families to have fun playing games, swimming and learning about the local environment, but also will offer a chance to help with a local beautification project.

Town officials are looking for volunteers to come and help add new plants and refresh the painting on the town's community center during the event. In the process the volunteers will learn about the various plants as well as have some fun for the whole family.

"Beyond a typical festival, this is a cooperative opportunity where our residents get to make a difference locally and learn something new in the process," Discovery Bay Parks and Landscape manager Fairin Perez said. "We've brought out environmentalists to educate us about our wetlands, landscape companies that have demonstrated proper tree planting techniques, and there will be products and services of ecologically friendly vendors."

This is the third Earth Day Celebration and Family Festival the town has offered to residents. The event features environmentally friendly vendors, music and a kids' zone play area that will include arts and crafts, jump houses and games. A $3 wristband is offered to cover the kids' zone area. The fee will also include full use of the community center's heated pool for children and adults for the day.

While the event promotes a lot of family fun activities, the underlining theme is the environment and how to protect it. Discovery Bay general manager, Rick Howard, believes strongly in protecting the environment and the message this Earth Day Celebration conveys to the town's residents.

"In light of the governor's drought declaration in January, it is important now more than ever to get the message out. We need to protect our natural resources," Howard said. "The Discovery Bay Earth Day event is aimed at just that, providing the public with an assortment of resources and go-to methods of saving money and at the same time helping to protect the environment."

The event is also an opportunity for businesses and organizations to connect with the community. The festival and vendors area is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The volunteer planting portion of the event takes place from 9 a.m. to noon in front of the Discovery Bay Community Center, located at 1601 Discovery Bay Blvd.

"It's truly the people of this area that make Discovery Bay a green place to live," Perez said. "They take pride in their community, and you only have to drive our streets or visit our parks to realize that we have environmentally conscientious residents."

Those interested in volunteering, sponsoring or becoming a vendor may contact the Town at 925-634-1131 orparks@todb.ca.gov. Volunteers should arrive at 8:30 a.m. for registration.

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