HomeNews TranscriptNews Transcript NewsManalapan will open Eco Patio at recreation center during May 5 ceremony

Manalapan will open Eco Patio at recreation center during May 5 ceremony

MANALAPAN – The Manalapan Environmental Commission will host a grand opening celebration of its new Eco Patio at the Manalapan Recreation Center, Route 522, on May 5 from 10:30-11:30 a.m. There will be activities for children, a composting demonstration, live music, and refreshments donated by Wegmans.

The Eco Patio is a new area at the recreation center that showcases two demonstration gardens and provides environmental educational through permanent signs. The Eco Patio is in the Dreyer Lot adjacent to the playground and restrooms, according to a press release.

The name Eco Patio was inspired after a new patio built from eco-friendly permeable pavers was donated and installed by Pantano Nursery and Techo-Bloc. Pantano Nursery also donated additional materials to dress the gardens, including pavers volunteers used to create inviting paths around the gardens, according to the press release.

Students from the Manalapan High School Environmental Club painted murals at the site, including images of large butterflies that are intended for people to take photos in front of to look as if they have wings like a butterfly. A nearby sign encourages visitors to post the photos they take using #EcoPatioMTNJ

Emlar Farms donated a native sugar maple tree to the Eco Patio. Additional plants were donated by Steven Kristoph Nursery and Viridian Energy.

Through a grant from the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions, a wooden kiosk was installed that will house temporary displays that can share information about environmental topics. Two new benches provided by the township are made from recycled plastic, according to the press release.

One of the demonstration gardens at the Eco Patio is a rain garden which helps to capture rainwater before it reaches the storm drain. Rain gardens are beneficial for several reasons, such as helping to prevent water pollution and flooding, and creating habitat for birds, butterflies and beneficial insects, according to the press release.

The second garden is a monarch waystation which creates vital habitat for the monarch butterfly, whose annual migration to Mexico is endangered due largely to the loss of habitat, according to the press release.

Environmental Commission Chairwoman Jenine Tankoos said, “We created the Eco Patio to showcase ideas for residents of how they can help the environment, as well as to add another beautiful outdoor location in our community to relax or picnic among nature.”

“This is a true community project,” said Township Committeeman David Kane, who serves as the liaison to the environmental commission. “I am proud of this great environmental project and the volunteers who came together to add this amenity to the Manalapan Recreation Center.”

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