We used to attend the Earth Day Coalition (
@EarthDayCoalit NOTE: later in 2015 Twitter name changed to: @EarthDay_CLE) EarthFest event every year, but have missed the last several years. We have fond memories of walking from downtown Cleveland to the first EarthFest at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo (@ClemetZoo) when our oldest son was a baby riding in a child carrier on Stuart's back. Every year we attended, we were always interested in learning about the important work of the participating agencies.
Here is information from the Earth Day Coalition history web page about how it was founded to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of Earth Day:
Earth Day Coalition was incorporated in 1990 to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of Earth Day in Ohio. Our first office was located in the Turning Point offices on the West Superior Viaduct on the west bank of the Flats in downtown Cleveland. With a small budget, two staff persons and hundreds of dedicated volunteers, EarthFest ’90 was presented in the newly constructed RainForest building at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. Over 38,000 people attended our first Earth Day event along with exhibitors from northeast Ohio environmental organizations, agencies, schools and businesses, and generous event sponsors. Each year since 1990 hundreds of exhibitors and between 10,000 and 50,000 people celebrate at EarthFest, making this event one of the longest standing and most successful Earth Day celebrations in the country.
With such a great history, and a personal connection to our family, we were excited to be attending EarthFest 2015.
When we got to EarthFest 2015 on Sunday, April 19th, things were hopping!
We arrived in the afternoon, and thus missed the opening ceremony. After seeing the large number of displays, we wished we had come sooner. Even though the EarthFest was now being held at the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds (@CuyFair), we did not know that it would be so big. We did not think that so many of the fairground buildings would be used. We were pleased to see so many people attending -- it was quite a crowd! -- and so many participating environmental organizations.
The following are some shorter versions of the same videos are on our Flickr.com account that are also embeded in the tweets below.
According to the press release we read after the event, there were over 270 exhibits in ten sustainability exhibit areas. We also learned that Earth Day Coalition's EarthFest is "Ohio’s largest environmental education event and the longest running Earth Day celebration in the nation."
Here is some official information about the event:
EarthFest is a Zero Waste event. Zero waste requires thinking about how items can be eliminated from the waste stream and how the remaining waste can be converted into a resource. At EarthFest we will provide bins for composting, recycling, and waste with the ultimate goal of having little to no waste at the end of the event. EarthFest 2014 generated only 7 bags of trash because of the cooperation and assistance of last year’s exhibitors, attendees, and volunteers. With the help of the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds, Kimble, Zero Waste NEO, and plenty of dedicated volunteers, we hope to make our goal of 90% waste diversion. All vendors and exhibitors have also committed to our zero waste guidelines by only using compostable and recyclable materials.
People attending the event seemed genuinely excited to participate by actively placing their compostables and recyclables in the appropriate bins.
It is great that the Earth Day Coalition provides an example of how to run a zero waste event. We would like to see more organizations consider the environmental impact of their events by incorporating good environmental stewardship at their public functions.
You can read more about a great example of an event which follows zero waste practices in our Cleveland's One World Festival 2014 blog post. On the Cleveland's One World Festival 2014 Zero Waste web page, they share the following ideas
- Sort your food and other waste into color-coded bins available at our Zero-Waste Depots...
- ...vendors use biodegradable, compostable dineware.
- ...no bottled water for sale at the 2014 Cleveland One World Festival. Did you know that it takes 1.39 liters of water to make one liter of bottled water? Not to mention all the fossil fuel and energy costs!
- Bring your own sustainable water bottle...
Web page: Zero Waste at EarthFest
Zero Waste Event Planning Guide 2015
This helpful guide explains what zero waste is, the importance of going zero, as well as provides handy tips for hosting a zero waste event.
- EarthFest 2015 Zero Waste Guidelines for Exhibitors
While aimed for exhibitors, this guide can be used as a resource to see what can be recycled or composted, and what actually counts as "waste."
We hope that people who are reading this blog post will share these resources with other groups planning events.
#EarthfestCLE2015 - Tweets and Retweets
As we mentioned above, there were so many participating organizations that we did not see them all. Our @sos_jr tweets and retweets will give you a flavor of the event. We chose to see some organizations that were not known to us, and a few of our favorites. There were so many interesting people to learn from that we did not get to see them all.
EarthFest 2015 Tweets
Shuttlebike is safe for all ages,if you can cycle and swim you good to go! If you can't swim stay on your bike. pic.twitter.com/zhjwQRVvIB— Shuttle Bike SA (@ShuttlebikeSa) July 29, 2013
EarthFest 2015 celebrates the Year of Clean Water (photos) http://t.co/N3efdppuGY— clevelanddotcom (@clevelanddotcom) April 19, 2015
County Executive Armond Budish provides his congrats to APE winners & speaks of county efforts toward sustainability. pic.twitter.com/5Y1iHKNr3I— Earth Day Coalition (@EarthDayCoalit) April 19, 2015
Agrarian Collective Chef Demo and students from the Baldwin Wallace Music Conservatory at EarthFest. pic.twitter.com/nbxFBVsi8q— Earth Day Coalition (@EarthDayCoalit) April 19, 2015
Earth Day 2015
The Wikipedia entry for Earth Day reports that:
Earth Day is an annual event, celebrated on April 22, on which day events worldwide are held to demonstrate support for environmental protection. It was first celebrated in 1970, and is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network, and celebrated in more than 192 countries each year.
To honor Earth Day, that in 2015 was a Wednesday, we want to share with you our @sos_jr tweets and retweets from the actual day of Earth Day, and related tweets following the day. Please retweet those items that you think your followers would find useful.
Earth Day 2015 Tweets
Happy 45th annual Earth Day! Great that it falls one day after John Muir's birthday and during National Park Week! pic.twitter.com/CCvextWRIZ— J. A. Garfield NHS (@GarfieldNPS) April 22, 2015
Happy earth day! We take care of the earth, we take care of ourselves... It's all connected. https://t.co/HpkuupxKus— DrinkLocal.DrinkTap. (@DrinkLocalTap) April 22, 2015
Here's our post from last year on how iimportant it is to restore Great Lakes wetlands. http://t.co/h4NXDbKuez— DrinkLocal.DrinkTap. (@DrinkLocalTap) April 21, 2015
Honored to be speaking at Fairlawn Rotary this morning! Thanks for your support in bringing safe water to rural Uganda w us! #Rotary— DrinkLocal.DrinkTap. (@DrinkLocalTap) April 22, 2015
It's not easy being green, but we can try! https://t.co/qMPNgawVdW— RenéeDeLuca (@ReneeDeLuca) April 22, 2015
Celebrate Earth Day! Did u know that u can recycle ur old cell phone, smart phone, or tablet by donating it to DVCAC? http://t.co/Qnn8bbQcyE— DVCAC (@DVCAC) April 22, 2015
Did you know that flushing medications down the toilet pollutes the water and can't be treated by @neorsd? Don't do it!— Shawn M. Brown (@shawnmbrown) April 22, 2015
With recent improvements, only 4.5 billion gallons of raw sewage is dumped into the Cuyahoga River each year. http://t.co/GYT7SzyYKa— The Civic Commons (@civiccommons) April 22, 2015
This seems like a perfect post for Earth Day - a tip to help reduce food waste. And use filtered tap H2O not... http://t.co/8b4JehEXJN— Eat Drink Cleveland (@EatDrinkCLE) April 22, 2015
Make plans to celebrate Earth Day and ‘Party for the Planet’ from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. this Saturday, April 25 at... http://t.co/gmHMYPmTLO— Cleveland Metroparks (@clevemetroparks) April 20, 2015
.@sos_jr awe, thanks!— DrinkLocal.DrinkTap. (@DrinkLocalTap) April 23, 2015
Earth Day Every Day! https://t.co/ouYXnCjbbn— Nature Center (@ShakerLakes) April 23, 2015
Celebrate Earth Day and ‘Party for the Planet’ this Saturday, April 25 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Zoo! Check... http://t.co/REaf7SaxRY— Cleveland Zoo (@clemetzoo) April 23, 2015
Related Blog Posts
As mentioned in the Earth Day tweets above, we have some related blog posts that talk about the good work that local organizations are doing to improve our environment. We want to invite you to learn more by reading these:
Thu, Sep 11, 2014 - "Take a Hike" - Cleveland's Flats & Beyond!
Learn how the Historic Gateway Neighborhood Corporation's (@GatewayCLE) Canal Basin Park in the Flats "Take A Hike" Tour showcases the parks being developed in Cleveland's flats. Also, learn about the work of the Cleveland Metroparks (@CleveMetroparks), Cleveland Rowing Foundation(@ClevelandRows), Canalway Partners' (@CanalwayCLE), Cuyahoga Valley National Park/Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park (@ConservancyCVNP), and the Cleveland Foundation(@CleveFoundation).
Thu, Sep 18, 2014 - Cleveland Foundation Centennial Gift: Weekends on the Water
The Cleveland Foundation (@CleveFoundation) partnered with the Cleveland Metroparks (@CleveMetroparks), the City of Cleveland’s Office of Sustainability, The Nature Conservancy (@Nature_org), and the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District (@neorsd) for a special cruise with narration that highlighted some of the recent exciting development along the river and lakefront.
Wed, Oct 8, 2014 - Visiting Wally Waterdrop - NEORSD Open House
At the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District (@WallyWaterdrop @neorsd) open house and Southerly Wastewater Treatment Plant tour, we learned about their work to protect our water. There were also displays from: Cleveland Metroparks (@CleveMetroparks), DrinkLocal DrinkTap (@DrinkLocalTap), Greater Cleveland Aquarium (@CLEaquarium), Great Lakes Science Center (@GLScienceCtr), and West Creek Conservancy (@west_creek).