Friday, October 24, 2008

National Campus Sustainability Day

Texas A&M celebrated National Campus Sustainability Day on Wednesday and I hauled my sorry butt out of bed and pedaled to campus to join in the festivities. It was held right in front of the Memorial Student Center, the hub of activity on campus, obvious from the stead stream of students whether between classes or not. 

When I first arrived, a few tables were still setting up, but for the most part, the place was in full swing. It looked like everything was outside, so rather than lock up my bike, I decided to keep it at my side as I walked from booth to booth. As I did a quick pan of the setup to see where I should start, I quickly noticed a couple friendly faces - The Vaughns from the Saturday farmers market! They were there next to the Farm Patch with a full spread of local goodies. I told visitors how wonderful her jams and jellies are and tried to push my favorites - the green beans and mustard greens, giving tips on how I prepare each of them. As usual, I was accused of making people hungry, but I did help make a few sales and spread the word about our year-round weekly farmers market on Saturday. I wasn't officially representing anyone, but hey, if it gets people out and eating locally...

There was a little music playing in the background (the live music wasn't arriving until the afternoon, long after I'd be gone), but the atmosphere was nice, the day was perfect, and I had a  nice time talking to vendors. A number of campus offices were represented, like the Office of Sustainability (didn't know we had one, but how cool!), the Physical Plant, and the campus recycling facility. There were also booths encouraging people to vote, to fight global poverty, and a display for solar powered trash compactors (see photo) that the university will be installing on a trial basis. One student set up a booth to sell her "upcycled" wares - items she saved and turned into usable products, like mugs, bowls, clothing etc. Talk about creativity!

I spent about 1-1/2 hours perusing the booths and meeting some new people. More than anything, I'm pleased that some of the more progressive organizations in the community are getting some exposure. The more we see other perspectives and alternative living around here, the more the overall culture will change. I'm all for that!

This was the first year that the National Campus Sustainability Day was celebrated on the Texas A&M campus, but considering the crowd and interest that I saw in the first hours of it's opening, it certainly won't be the last. 

Have a great weekend everyone!


fearlesschef said...

How neat! It's so awesome that you got to participate!

Heather @ SGF said...

fearlesschef - It was cool and people seemed interested.