Saturday, April 22 is Earth Day, and thousands of science enthusiasts will take to the streets across the country to support the scientific method and call for evidence-based policies from our government. Milwaukee is hosting its own satellite march beginning at 2 p.m. at Red Arrow Park. If you’re planning to attend or on the fence about joining, here’s what you need to know.
It’s political, but non-partisan
According to march organizers, the event is political in nature because science has become a political conversation in recent months. The march aims to hold policy-makers accountable: “Science should inform political decision making,” their website reads. However, it is not affiliated with any one politician or political party.
“Pro-Trump groups have not reached out in support of our movement but they are more than welcome to respectfully attend,” said Beth Ferris, media spokesperson for March for Science Milwaukee.
The route will pass several key Milwaukee science landmarks
The march will kick off at 3 p.m. “in the shadow of City Hall” after a 2 p.m. rally at Red Arrow Park, then continue west on State St., passing Milwaukee Public Museum, Central Library and other academic institutions.
Milwaukee’s march is an official satellite march
The official March for Science will take place in Washington D.C., but hundreds of satellite marches have sprung up around the globe, as was the case with January’s Women’s March.
“The Milwaukee march gives perspective on the issues that the Milwaukee community faces as well as it’s advantages, such as living on the incredible resource, Lake Michigan,” Ferris said.
Planning began back in January
Milwaukee was quick to join the momentum of the March for Science movement back in January. The event came together through the dedication of volunteers sourced online and through word of mouth.
The march is on Earth Day, but climate change isn’t the only issue
“The movement formed because of an increasing pattern of political and corporate interest public policy, and the disregard for evidence-based policy,” Ferris said. “Milwaukee Area Science Advocates (MASA) has emphasis on influencing on sustainability, science education and public health.”
Speakers include Milwaukee students and teachers
A lineup of speakers will commence at 2 p.m. in Red Arrow Park, which includes local scientists, students and educators. You can see the entire roster on the Milwaukee March for Science website.
Over a dozen local organizations have joined the movement
Organizations that have issued official statements of support include the Urban Ecology Center, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, Inc. and the Milwaukee Public Museum. See the full list of supporting orgs here.
You can buy official March for Science merch
The Milwaukee satellite march is offering Milwaukee-specific march merch (say that three times fast!) online, featuring our skyline encased in a round bottom flask.
This is only the beginning
After the march, Milwaukee Area Science Advocates plan to harness the momentum and create more opportunities for science advocacy in Milwaukee. Keep your eyes out for a kickoff event in June.