Picture-perfect destinations that embrace an earth-friendly approach
By: Olivia Huerta Sanchez
I’m a strong believer that Earth Day should be celebrated every day instead of just one day. Teaching our kids how to take care of earth early on is very important, not only because we want them to grow up on a planet that is clean but because we should teach them to respect nature and all the aspects that go along with it.
I came across this community online that I was quite taken by surprise that it existed in our own backyard. In Tumacacori, Arizona there is a place called Avalon Organic Gardens and Eco Village. This place is located in the Santa Cruz River Valley in Southern Arizona. It is one of the world’s largest Eco Villages. The residents there do organic gardening, upcycling, watershed management, rain water harvesting and solar power to name a few. The cool thing about it is you can camp there for a fee (make reservations in advance) and take a tour.
If you like to participate in hands on clean-ups the San Pedro River by Sierra Vista has a couple of clean-ups a year. You need to sign up in advance, be able to volunteer from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. and be able to hike over some river terrain for a few miles. It’s a stopover habitat for millions of migrating birds each year so keeping it clean will assure that these birds don’t get caught up in trash left behind from human irresponsibility.
Camping is a great ecofriendly activity you can do anywhere in this state and you can’t go wrong! A few things before you go on your adventure. Take plastic bottles instead of glass, they can still break even if your careful and jeopardize animals and ground. Please make sure if you are lighting a fire that it is out before you take off anywhere. Clean up after yourselves! Enough said. Some fabulous camp grounds and some of my favorites are Lockett Meadow up in Flagstaff, Hannagan Meadow in the Eastern part of our state, Woods Canyon Lake on the Rim, Lynx Lake in Prescott, and Burro Creek north of Wikeup.
You can make everyday Earth Day just by the choices we make when it comes to mother nature and the way we live. Remember we want to leave generations to come with a clean, beautiful earth.
Olivia Huerta Sanchez is a professional photographer specializing in family, grad, wedding and landscape photography for the past 8 years. She has had her work published in Phoenix Magazine, Arizona Republic and community newspapers. She is native to Arizona, a wife and mother of two older boys. She also works at a local hospital in post-partum and likes to get people to get outdoors and explore Arizona via her Instagram page.