Saturday, October 1, 2011

Zero waste at festivals

Today we went to the harvest festival at the Berkshire Botanical Garden. I have been going to this festival as long as I've lived in the Berkshires (about 15 years) and the weather is totally different every year  -  this year it was just cold. Luckily it wasn't as wet as had been predicted... but I remember that one year it snowed and another year I got a sunburn.

This time our visit to the festival was a little bit different. This time we came with everything that we would need to have a zero waste experience there... with the exception of the fuel needed to travel. Oh, and the fuel for the tractor that pulled us on a hay ride (I guess there is a chance that they used biodiesel though).

We usually just carry one backpack with everything we might need and my partner and I take turns carrying it. Today we packed a plate (which falafel later ended up on), utensils, chico bags (later filled with 2nd hand loot), family sized water bottle, my insulated klean kanteen (which was later filled with local beer that had been brewed by solar power), cloth napkins (which some fresh local soft pretzel ended up wrapped in), a tin container just in case and some snack taxis (one filled with popcorn and one empty). There was also an empty coffee cup for my partner, but the line was so long because it was so cold that we didn't end up using it.

Even though there were tons of vendors and crafters, we found our loot at the second hand booths. We found books ($6 for 7), picture frames ($9 for a 8), a photo album ($.50) and a metal firetruck ($1) that made my youngest very happy. We ate good food and grabbed some to go on the way out - soft pretzels and a bunch or our most favorite carrots grown by our friends at woven roots farm. We used most of the stuff we carried, including our chico bags which we needed to carry the extra stuff that we ended up with.

All in all we had a good time even if it the weather wasn't ideal. We successfully avoided creating or contributing to any waste... and you know what? It was really easy to do.

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