Conserving natural resources

For the 10th year, conservation-minded organizations from across Albany County are set to gather at the Albany County Fairgrounds this weekend.

The Laramie Conservation Expo, hosted by Laramie Rivers Conservation District, is scheduled to run from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. today at the fairgrounds in the Activities Building. Admission is free.

Laura McGinley, district clerk for Laramie Rivers Conservation District, said she’s expecting 45 booths at the expo, including displays by government agencies, nonprofit organizations and businesses. Several local artists will be showing their work, and there will be raffle prizes and door prizes. Expo-goers will find information about gardening, composting, beekeeping, wildlife conservation, recycling, net-zero buildings, alternative energy, seed libraries, local food and more.

In addition to booths, there will be several presentations during the day on topics including xeriscaping, pollinators and a type of alternative energy called the liquid fluoride thorium reactor.

“We want the community to be able to come out and learn about conservation and stuff they can implement within their own lives, homes and businesses,” McGinley said.

“Also what’s available around town. Maybe there’s things they weren’t aware of that are available in our own area.”

LRCD education coordinator Trish Penny will have activities for children. They will also have the chance to view insects through microscopes and learn about stream erosion at a stream table.

“That’s always really popular with kids,” McGinley said.

Students from Indian Paintbrush Elementary School will be raffling a raised garden bed to raise money for their garden program. A hoop house to be built during the event will be another raffle prize. Food and drinks will be for sale.

McGinley said the expo is also a chance for participating groups to network with each other.

“They get to talk to each other and meet each other and learn about what they do,” she said.

Laramie Rivers Conservation District works to promote the conservation of soil, water, habitat and other natural resources in Albany County. The organization provides cost-shares on projects such as gardens and living snow fences. It also works to educate children about conservation principles.

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