Going Green Matters 2016 – Year 10 is the Best Yet!


"Going Green Matters" took place at the Michigan Shores Club in Wilmette on March 13, 2016. This is Wilmette’s annual community environmental fair presented by Go Green Wilmette and the Village of Wilmette. Under the leadership of Beth Drucker, president, this organization that began with a small group in 2006 and has grown to influence not only Wilmette, but many surrounding communities, in addition.


Beth Drucker, President of Go Green Wilmette,photo- Marcia Heeter

“Sustainable Suburbs, Planning Resilient Communities” was this year’s theme. At 10 years, this was the best one yet.


Model house-putting the parts together

Each room offers more information

Every room on the second floor of the Michigan Shores Club where it took place was filled with attractive, educational and compelling displays.  There was a Go Green Café, a great raffle and an LED light bulb give away.  There were 14 categories related to supporting smart, sustainable development in Chicagoland communities including: Edible gardens, Energy-efficient homes, LED lighting options, School exhibits, Student displays and Interactive Eco-Zone, hands-on exhibits presented by local volunteers. There were 26 of these – a very unique feature of the fair.

Ready to go


Native Plant sale and cafe


Beth Drucker was very pleased with these statistics:

Attendees came from 22 communities, near and far; students from 4th grade to graduate school participated; 1400 individuals including volunteers, exhibitors and visitors, attended plus people who recycled, but did not attend the fair.  Of those who were polled about their opinion of the fair as they were exiting, 83% said they planned to return next year.


What you need to know


Two posters that many people stopped to study as they entered provided new information.  Used drugs can be dropped of at the Wilmette Police Department 24/7.  Another poster was created by Jan Barshis and demonstrated the problem with using showers, washing machines and dishwashers during heavy rains because this contributes to flooding- who knew?


Random Acts of Flowers


The Native Plant Sale was a draw for many attendees as was the Go Green Café.  I love the concept of Random Acts of Flowers. Andrea Lutz (pictured) told me that RAF had recently delivered flowers to its 25,000 person.  Partnering with health care facilities, they provide a beautiful service.


left to right) Julia Bowe, Rose McGrath, Lily Bowie-Photo-Marcia Heeter

Nat Drucker and friends

The light bulb give away and the bright idea area were great attractions.

Max Chilsen-Photo -Marcia Heeter


Joellen Varga tells about safe water

A display that caught me by surprise was developed by Joellen Varga.

Saima Abassi Board Member, noted that,


“Joellen's exhibit was one of our best in the Ecozone. 

This year she had a very interactive safe water exhibit inspired by an article she had read in the NY times Sunday magazine. The article was about how a DuPont factory in West.Virginia was polluting the ground water in the area it was operating in. 


She very cleverly condensed that article into a very interactive exhibit that made for a powerful visual and an efficient learning tool to raise awareness about pollutants in out drinking water. To illustrate how toxic chemicals from DuPont's factory were polluting the ground water, she had visitors pour colorful beads from a small teflon pan through a funnel into a DuPont factory made out of cardboard, and watch them go into a retention pond. Through this exhibit she raised awareness about safe guarding our drinking water. “


Some Raffle items

Always looking for new ways to obtain information on how to make the community more sustainable and green, Go Green Wilmette goes back to the drawing board to determine what will make next year’s event better, still.  Plan to come and see what develops.


You can contact Go Green Wilmette to help you green your next event and to see how to manage all kinds of environmental issues.


 Photos: B. Keer unless otherwise noted












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