For Hub City Times
MARSHFIELD — Hundreds of marchers joined the Central Wisconsin March for Science on Earth Day in Marshfield. Organizers of the grassroots march, which was followed by an educational rally, counted 427 marchers and a crowd of over 500 attending the educational rally.
Marchers carried signs and chanted in a four block long march, working its way from the public library through downtown to the Oak Avenue Community Center.
Local scientists and statewide experts spoke in support of science at the educational rally, held at the Oak Avenue Community Center. Dr. Jerry Machado of PreventionGenetics, a Marshfield company, talked about the importance of funding scientific research which has contributed so much to our knowledge of genetics and, ultimately, the ability to diagnose and cure diseases. Dr. Edward Belongia, an expert researcher of vaccine effectiveness at Marshfield Clinic Research Institute, underscored the benefit to society of immunization and the lives it saves.
Other speakers spoke compellingly about science education, Marshfield’s contribution to agricultural research, economic benefits of addressing climate change with renewable energy sources, scientific research in farm safety, and contributions to our health and quality-of-life from environmental science.
Displays of Tesla and Nissan Leaf electric cars drew a steady stream of people, while display tables by local organizations offered visitors a chance to learn about scientific involvement of groups ranging from the First Presbyterian Green Team to the UW-Marshfield/Wood County campus. The Marshfield Area Chamber of Commerce & Industry highlighted several science-based Marshfield area businesses.
“It was a fabulous turn-out, which exceeded our expectations,” stated Jodi Chojnacki, one of the event organizers. “We stood up and made our voices heard to support and protect science. Science benefits us all.”
Photo credits: Donald Neel