Many of them had never heard of “fracking”, or what it could do to New York’s drinking water. Most of them weren’t active organic gardeners, nor did they have plans to build solar panels on their roofs any time soon.
But the more than 400 people who attended the first ever Larchmont Mamaroneck Sustainability Expo – held last Saturday at the Hommocks Middle School – came away more educated on the environmental issues facing our towns. Many were inspired to take action at home or in the community.
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“I’m amazed at how many diverse displays there are,” said Ingrid Mudge of Mamaroneck, speaking of the nearly 70 vendors, schools and non-profit organizations that participated in the event. “It’s great to see how easily some of these ideas can be incorporated into our lives.”
The full day program, broken into morning and afternoon sessions, served as a crash course in environmental protection and health awareness, tackling issues ranging from protecting our kids from toxins to building or renovating your “green” house. The Ask The Environmentalist booth was open all day to take questions large and small (“What am I supposed to do with batteries?”), and the Kids Craft room had lessons on how to make art out of recycled materials.
“Green issues are really important to me and I think it’s crucial to set an example for our kids, through education as well as practice,” said Ingrid Veiss, who volunteered at the Mamaroneck Avenue Community Garden booth with her 7-year-old daughter, Emma Strudwick.
The Expo was a tri-municipal event sponsored by the Village of Larchmont, Village of Mamaroneck and Town of Mamaroneck committees on the environment. Though the event was the first of its kind, conference organizers are considering a variety of public events for the future.
“Our committee worked on the notion that ‘If we build it, they will come’ – and they did,” said Jennifer Jensen, chair of the Expo. “But our work doesn’t stop there. We will continue to bring this kind of information and resources into our community, and we’ll find fun and engaging ways to share it. There’s more to come.”