Earth Day Fair shows GH many shades of green

A crowd of 38 people gathered in the Ottawa County Courthouse parking lot Saturday afternoon for a march to show their support for Mother Earth. Unfortunately, she didn't get the memo. A persistent mist and temperatures around 40 degrees made the weather less than ideal for a march through downtown Grand Haven. Participants would have a chance to warm up at the sixth annual Earth Day Fair at the Grand Haven Community Center.
Jordan Travis
Apr 18, 2011

The three-hour fair consisted of 40 booths from different businesses and environmental organizations. Along with informational booths about sustainable practices — including one about low-energy lighting and another about an environmentally friendly laundry soap — the fair included activities for children.

“The purpose is really to have the community come and see what’s available locally for promoting the health and well-being of the Earth,” said Patti Baldus, a member of the Lakeshore Earth Day Committee.

Attendees also had a chance to indulge their green thumb. The Home Depot in Grand Haven gave away vegetable and fruit plants, as well as herbs. People could be seen walking through the fair with eight-pot trays filled with plants.

Prior to the fair, the marchers carried signs or shook musical shakers as they walked through downtown. Before that, a yoga class was held at the Community Center, Baldus said.

The point of the events is to show a “basic love for the planet,” said Jean King, the founder of Lakeshore Earth Day Celebration, now in its sixth year.

“Humans need to celebrate the gifts that the planet makes available to us,” she said while standing near a display for community gardening. “This is a chance to not only celebrate the Earth, but to think about ways to live more harmoniously” with it.

King also said she was grateful for the efforts of the volunteers who helped at the events.

“I love all the businesses who are here for all the right reasons, that are doing things that are eco-friendly and helping out the Earth,” said Carley LaVercombe of Ferrysburg as she browsed the booths.

LaVercombe said she was surprised by one booth that showed the damage that can be made by some cleaning products.

“I think that this is a great program and that we should keep it going,” she said. “It’s really good to educate the locals about how little changes can make a huge difference.”

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