What a Wonderful Day! The BCPA Earth Day Celebration

Recycled Art Project (photo by Keka)

Thanks to everyone who came out to the Brooklyn Center of the Performing Arts Earth Day celebration on April 11th! The event was so crowded and energized, it was a great way to kick off the Earth Day festivities going on all spring!

There were representatives from the following organizations: Brooklyn Botanic Garden; Garbage of Eden Designs; Sustainable Flatbush; the ArtLab of the Brooklyn College Community Partnership Program; Seeds, Soil & Sunshine; The New York City Fire Department; the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation; Tova Ackerman’s Puppetry In Practice; Campus Road Garden; Puppeteer Ronny Wasserstrom; Teaching Artist Susan Marinoff; The Bar Mitzvah Project.

At 3 o’clock the doors opened from the auditorium where families had enjoyed a performance by the Dirty Sock Fun Time Band. As families were let out into the sunny (although windy!) spring air you could feel how awakened everyone was as they walked around all the tables asking for more information at every stop.

We had the privilege of working with a lot of children at our table, because we were making colorful flowers out of used plastic bottles as part of our Zero Waste Initiative. The parents and guardians seemed to enjoy the idea as much as the crafty children. Hopefully we inspired them to go home and keep thinking differently about products they have bought before they thrown them into the garbage destined for one of our already-overflowing landfills.

Seeds, Soil and Sunshine (photo by Keka)

Later in the day we walked around to meet the other participants and see what their organizations were all about. Madeline Nelson and Maikel Carder from Seeds, Soil, & Sunshine got me excited about growing my own food in my windowsill that I will plant in my parents’ garden during the summer. As I looked at the tiny, budding plant that I had just transplanted I asked Madeline with amazement, “So this will be an eggplant by the fall? Like I can eat it?” And with a big smile on her face she answered, warmly, “Yeah!” Growing my own food is such an empowering prospect, I want my windowsill full of edible greens! Not only will I know where they came from and that no pesticides were used to grow them, but the impact on the earth will be even smaller since the food will only be transported a few feet!

I was especially excited by Stephanie Huffaker from Garbage of Eden with the necklaces and headbands made out of used plastic bags. How eye-opening! It’s amazing that so much of what we throw in the garbage can be completely redesigned and rethought! Think creative, think innovation, think “What else can I use this for?”!

Thanks everyone who joined us for this day of inspiration and fun! I hope you learned something useful during the few hours we shared with one another, and that you’re just as excited as I am to make some small changes in our lives that will have significant impacts on our planet. I hope to see you at upcoming events! Enjoy the warmer spring air and sunshine:)

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