Going Green With Red, White & Blue Celebrations

Green Mary, who runs ‘zero waste events’ with biodegradable, compostable greenware, should supply our annual island 4th of July gig, because as I set up for the 100+ families to run our kids games again this year, I’m seeing universal discordance.

Next year, I plan to lobby our homeowners association to order her potato starch utensils, sugar cane hot cups instead of this plethora of plastic. When I Googled ‘sustainable celebrations’ to get some tips to serve up to our board, irony astounded me, as it led me back to one of our own Shaping Youth media mavens, Sara Ost, formerly of Flamin’ Fuji fame and Healthbolt!

Sara, who ranted along with me about kids’ food marketing, has now taken her green scene to a bright new venture as Editor in Chief of the green gathering spot, EcoSalon, which showed up with this article, Sustainable Spreads on the 4th —Talk about ‘what goes around comes around!’ I’m thrilled to see Sara hasn’t abandoned the kids wellness arena in favor of her new green zine.

I’ll interview her soon, to find out how EcoSalon differs from other fresh pickins like Greenzer, EcoMom Alliance, Green Girls Guide, Enviromom, EcoStiletto, and EcoFabulous shopping entities, especially since yours truly will soon be writing for EcoChild’s Play hoping to invite some of the Green Options network aboard Shaping Youth’s team of positive pros.

EcoSalon’s ‘we believe’ manifesto includes, “style and sustainability belong in the same sentence, and that an eco-friendly lifestyle can be both ethically satisfying and fashionably fun.”

But I hear that a lot, so I want to dig deeper and find their “USP” as we say in marketing, to impart a greener message that families can use daily beyond selling stuff.

Meanwhile…a few thoughts to impart to kids on the 4th…

Can fireworks go green with high-nitrogen, low carbon mixtures being developed that leave minimal environmental impact? Yes they can…though they cost twice as much.

Can vegans create decent BBQ recipes? Yes, but I’d jazz it up a bit to prove ‘green and healthy’ doesn’t have to be boring.

Patriotic parfaits and mini-flags for kids made of strawberries, blueberries and vanilla yogurt are always my hit at the Q, as are watermelon balls and blueberries using the hollowed out gourd itself as the dish, or sparkling cranberry elixirs, using those fun star-shaped ice-cubes…

But here are much more creative concoctions at a site I just found called Weelicious, “Fast, Easy & Fresh Babyfood” that’s chock full of fun recipes and holiday ideas…

I love seeding the idea of eco-message makeovers and kids teaching parents how to ‘go green’ in fun ways.

After all, even the teens at our annual island fun fest love old-fashioned apple bobbing and burlap sack races, especially when the prize is ‘green.’ ($1)

Still, we need to ‘plant’ some green cues to see how we can find the equivalent of an ‘Oriental Trading Company catalog’ for green kids products ideas that won’t cost the GNP of a small country.

As Thomas Friedman eloquently writes in this NYTimes piece,

“I want to rename “green.” I want to rename it geostrategic, geoeconomic, capitalistic and patriotic…”

…”We need a new green ideology, properly defined, that has the power to mobilize liberals and conservatives, evangelicals and atheists, big business and environmentalists around an agenda that can both pull us together and propel us forward.”

Yes, we do.

As stellar leaders like Van Jones and the Positive Futures Network seed the way to a greener planet, the least we can do is host a July 4th BBQ that frees us from excess trash.

Happy Independence Day! Let freedom ring…in green!

Visual credit: EcoSalon article by Luanne Bradley, and Weelicious parfait



  1. Hi Amy thanks for the shout out! I hope you check out EcoStiletto–I love what you are doing!!


  2. Rachel the video on your site is a great explanation of the EcoStiletto ‘footprint’ concept…I must admit, I immediately thought ‘fashion/floof’ vs. ‘tiny mark on the planet’ when I first heard the name…But it’s a great one, on all fronts. Like what you’re doing too…I’ll pop it in my groaning Google reader for sure…;-)

  3. Hi Amy. You have a great blog here and really vibe with what you’re writing about. I’m not a parent yet but wholeheartedly agree that we need more awareness around the media exposure upon adults primarlly in shaping what we value. Obviously that reflects on children too. and me because I havent grown up yet! ha ha

    By the way I found you from the link to the USP article that I wrote. Glad that you did,

    Have a great day and thanks again.

  4. Thanks, Herrin, for the ping and the kudos…’we try harder’ as the ol’ Avis slogan says… 😉

    Seriously though, the media mgmt. side of positive vs. negative is a biggie for me, so I appreciate your input, as it confirms to me that ‘non-parents’ and youth in general ‘get it’ that we need to accentuate the good and allow the ‘creme de la creme’ to emerge and the rest to sink to the sludge at the bottom…rather than the opposite model of giving celebrity to drek and burying the ‘good stuff.’ Thanks for taking the time to comment, best, –Amy.

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