Earth Day festival sprouts for spring

By Thao Nguyen
Contributing Writer

The Brookhaven College Green Team Coalition will host the annual Earth Day Fest to raise awareness of the environmental Earth Day movement celebrated around the world.

Brookhaven’s Earth Day Fest will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. April 3 in the Commons Courtyard.

Carrie Schweitzer, director of sustainability and co-chair of the Green Team Coalition, said the first festival was held almost a decade ago when the Green Team, which consisted of mostly employees at the time, wanted to come up with a way to remind people about Earth Day at Brookhaven.

Last year, the Green Team Coalition members sold veggie burgers while other environmental organizations had booths with information about recycling, protecting the environment and environmental problems, Schweitzer said.

The Thomas Jefferson Collegiate Academy also participated in the event with a booth showcasing one of their projects.

This year, the Green Team Coalition will host the Trashionista Fashion Show with hopes to create a fun, creative and educational environment for students to learn more about sustainability.

Good Will Industry will also be present to collect clothing and e-waste, except for TVs, Schweitzer said. The American Association of Retired Persons will have a truck with a shredder to allow people to bring papers or documents to be disposed off.

They will allow up to three bags per person to be shredded.

The Green Team will sell veggie dogs will also be sold for $2.

The Green Team Coalition and Brookhaven library staff also set up the green pledge for sustainability, which was an interactive way for students to commit to incorporating green activities in their lives by painting their hands, printing them onto a banner and writing their promised actions on their handprints.

Schweitzer said last year’s giveaways included candles with sustainable messages, recyclable water bottles, used books, recyclable shopping bags, reusable bottles and lunch bags.

Schweitzer said, “I hope Earth Day Fest will be an opportunity to remind people about preserving the community we are living in and educating people about reduce, reuse and recycle.”

She said the Trashionista Fashion Show will be a great way to show examples of how to reuse things.

Edyeris Gonzalez, president of the Green Team Coalition, said a challenge for the coalition is getting people involved in sustainability events.

She said she feels the team needs to raise environmental awareness to help build eco-friendly communities.

Gonzalez said since the Brookhaven community is very diverse, the Green Team has an opportunity to educate Brookhaveans from across the nation and around the world about the importance of environmental awareness.

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