On April 27th, Pottstown events will go beyond talking the talk on saving the planet, and walk the walk as well. The walking starts with the Pottstown Climate March, but continues afterwards at the Pottstown EcoFest. There, vendors will put eco-friendly living into practice. According to Caitlin Mercer, an EcoFest organizer, “my favorite form of activism is teaching by example”.
This year’s EcoFest will focus on wildlife protection. Trash, especially plastic, poses a major problem for wildlife. Animals can choke on, get trapped in, or ingest plastic trash. Recycling provides a temporary solution. EcoFest will provide plenty of recycling bins and information on what can be put in them. In addition, Peace Advocacy Network will accept items not collected curbside, such as small electronics, for processing through TerraCycle. For more information on items they accept, visit www.pottstownecofest.com.
However, making less trash to begin with is what EcoFest aspires to. According to Katay Lezenby, “Virtually everything we use requires raw materials to be extracted from the earth or grown using agriculture. Both destroy places animals live. Then, manufacturing our things causes pollution and greenhouse gases. Wejust really need to use a lot less of everything; that’s what EcoFest willemphasize.”
EcoFest vendors are urged to refrain from giving out or selling single-use plastic and styrofoam and to offer only compostable cutlery and food containers. These will go to a local composting business. Instead of throwaway plastic bottled water, Mobilization for Animals will serve spring water from returnable jugs for people to fill their own bottles and sell reusable cups to those who need them. Attendees can also buy glass straws, bamboo utensils, string bags, and glass storage jars from Community Ecostore, a Phoenixville business that carries resource-saving products.
EcoFest will also showcase one of the most significant actions an individual can take to protect both animals and the planet: plant-based eating. A plant diet uses far less land and water than an omnivore one, and, so, leaves more places for animals to live in the wild. It generates significantly less water pollution,protecting aquatic animals. It saves animals like predators, bison, prairie dogs and wild horses who are exterminated by ranchers. It leaves fish and coral reefs unharmed. And it creates fewer greenhouse gases that cause climate change, the greatest threat to all life.
Local restaurants at EcoFest will sell popular entrees like pizza, Buffalo wings, and baked goods made without meat, eggs or dairy. People will have a chance to taste delicious plant-based dishes and discover local places who offer them.
Pottstown Climate March and Pottstown EcoFest both start at noon; EcoFest ends at 5:00. Marchers will congregate in front of Hill School, 800 E. High Street, and end their walk at EcoFest in Smith Family Plaza Park, 100 E. High Street, Pottstown, PA 19464. For more information, visit: www.pottstownecofest.com or www.facebook.com/PottstownEcoFest/ or email Mfavent@gmail.com.