Thursday, April 15, 2010

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Green

Celebrate Earth Day in Chicago!

Chicago’s Largest Community-based Earth Day event features a food-focused look at the “Recipe for a Healthy Planet”. Fresh, cold, hot, but always healthy – food is the focus of the third annual North Lake Shore Earth Day celebration on Saturday April, 17th, Chicago’s largest multi-community Earth Day event.

North Side organizations and activists from Andersonville, Edgewater, Lincoln Square, Ravenswood, Rogers Park and Uptown, with support from Loyola University Chicago, will gather to inform and advocate for a “Recipe for a Healthy Planet”, encouraging Chicagoans to champion a quality food future.

This free, all-day, family event begins at 9 a.m and ends at 4:30 p.m., indoors, at Loyola’s Lakeshore campus, inside the Quinlan Life Sciences Building at 1050 W. Sheridan Road.
Workshops, panels, art projects, cooking demonstrations, environmental group tabling and films about food will provide participants with the knowledge and techniques to create a healthier food system and greener living practices in their shared communities.

Join in the various workshops, presentations and panels and hear about neighborhood food policy, making stock from vegetable scraps, making your own baby food, and learning the basics of edible landscaping. The exciting film program includes the film “Fresh”, an inspirational documentary that highlights farmers and communities that have created an alternative to the industrialized food system; and “A Quiet Revolution”, narrated by Meryl Streep, showing case studies on how even one person’s action can cause environmental solutions. At your leisure, you can also converse and get informed from the participants of the 50-table strong Green Fair.

Children will have fun as they learn about seed planting, nature’s creatures, eating organic, yoga, collaging and composting and a full day of additional activities at State Representative Harry Osterman’s Kid’s Corner. Mike Nowak, Master Gardener, Humorist and WCPT Radio personality is the morning’s keynote speaker, highlighting the local initiatives Chicagoans can foster to encourage more healthy food in their own communities.

Elected officials participating in this event are Chicago Aldermen Patrick O’Connor (40th), Helen Shiller (46th), Eugene Schulter (47th), Mary Ann Smith (48th) and Joe Moore (49th), Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin, Congressman Mike Quigley, Illinois State Senator Heather Steans; and State Representatives Greg Harris and Harry Osterman.

A light breakfast and coffee will be provided. Lunch will be sold on site by local vendors. The event is easily accessible by public transportation via the CTA Red Line and the #147 bus. Drivers may park for free at the campus main parking garage. Walking and biking are encouraged, and all cyclists are invited to join in our community bike ride.

In addition to the Saturday main event, a special musical evening will be held the night of Friday, April 16th, from 7 to 10 p.m. at the newly renovated Stella Maris Chapel of Loyola University. The local musicians showcased will be recording for the Earth Day event on Saturday. Northside community leaders will also be honored with certificates of appreciation and resource kits to help them green their blocks and neighborhoods.

-Contributing Editor - M.

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