The fair offered information booths, exhibitor displays, and a wide range of presentations on topics such as home energy conservation, renewable energy resources, green cleaning products, organic food choices, green landscaping, transportation, and more.
The refreshments were delicious and included in addition to items donated by Fresh Market in Edens Plaza special organic mini cupcakes from Divine Pastry. A range of activities for all ages engaged attendees at the kidsâ€™ activity center.
The batteries and electronics that were collected for recycling took on a life of their own. Beth Drucker, Go Green Wilmette president observed, â€śIf you did not see the recycling, you miss an incredible sight - an absolutely ocean of electronics - ten times more than I imagined. I was utterly flabbergasted!â€ť Wish I had seen it, too.
The displays and presentations were carefully constructed to engage people who were just getting started as well as individuals who wanted to learn as much as possible about sustainable living. The Organic Gardener, Jeanne Pinsof Nolan, was the final speaker of the day and offered memorable suggestions on creating vegetable gardens.
I was able to attend three presentations and I found them compelling, succinct, and very informative. I was impacted by the main ideas to the point that I came home and immediately read labels on my skin care products. I found the messages clear and non-threatening, emphasizing that small changes really make a difference. The presenters were very skilled and really knew their topics. They had to because they only had eight minutes to reach their audience.
Going Green Matters was presented by Go Green Wilmette and the Village of Wilmette. Go Green Wilmette, founded in 2006, is a 501(c) 3 corporation that works to raise environmental awareness in the Wilmette community and to inspire residents to take action to make Wilmette a more earth-friendly place to live. â€śWeâ€™re thrilled to be partnering with the Village of Wilmette in presenting Going Green Matters,â€ť said Go Green Wilmette president Beth Drucker. â€śThe issue of environmental sustainability is more relevant than ever and each of us can make a difference. Our fair addressed many different topics and had something of interest for everyone.â€ť
Sponsors included, SolarReserve, Solar Service, Chalet Nursery and Garden Center, I â€“ GO Car Sharing, Ameriprise Financial, Northbrook Toyota, Consolidated Printing, Frothingham Communications and Renewal by Andersen and their support in helping to make this a successful event for the whole community to enjoy was appreciated.
The Womanâ€™s Club of Wilmette, 930 Greenleaf Avenue, was not only a wonderful setting for the event, but members were active participants in the event.
And to prove that â€śGoing Green Mattersâ€ť- just look at what one community can do: engage 65 volunteer, entice 100 exhibitors, greet 475 walk-in attendees and motivate 50 people to drop off electronics who never attended the event itself. Participation of 690 people definitely matters. Final statistics included: 58,182 (yes 58,182) pounds of electronic goods plus more than 3 full recycling bins of batteries, several large boxes of CFL bulbs, and many boxes of cell phones, toner and ink cartridges, and CDâ€™s.
And attendees seemed upbeat and inspired when they left. I overheard positive comments like, â€śIt was so well organizedâ€ť, â€śThere was a wonderful variety of presentersâ€ť, â€śI am so glad I cameâ€ť, and â€śI learned some new ways to do thingsâ€ť. â€śI can do that!â€ť
To learn more about Go Green Wilmette and upcoming programs go to: www.gogreenwilmette.org
If you missed your chance to recycle electronics find out when you can do it again at: http://www.swancc.org/recycling/recyclingdropoffcenters.html
Photos: Barbara Keer