EarthFest began in 2010 when Brooklyn Center residents Jill Dalton and Diane Sannes joined forces in a grassroots effort to promote community and environmental awareness in the city. The event is free to the public and is a great way to learn simple Earth-friendly techniques, which can be used in everyday activities.
This year’s event kicked off at noon with short presentations by Whitney Clark, Executive Director of Friends of the Mississippi River, and Mark Ritchie, Secretary of State. Both Clark and Ritchie discussed the importance of taking care of our planet, especially our beautiful state of Minnesota. Allison Warden, an Inupiaq Eskimo originally from Kaktovik, Alaska, and the featured speaker, followed with a one-woman performance.
Warden’s show “Calling All Polar Bears” allows her to explain how climate change in the Arctic and the push of outside entities to find resources affects the people, animals, culture, and way of life in her village. Throughout the performance, she took on several different voices, including those of people and animals. While it was interesting to hear those voices of the village people, it was fascinating to hear the assumed opinions of the polar bears and the seals.
Warden sang a few songs, and the phrase “where did all the ice go?” was mentioned several times; by the end, the audience was heard repeating the question in song. Warden truly brought a new perspective to light and inspired the attendees to think differently about the animals and the importance of taking action now versus later when it might just be too late.Following Warden’s show, attendees had the opportunity to visit more than 60 booths. Food, crafts, and demonstrations could be found at many booths, while others simply had information on ways to become more Earth-friendly. The Minnesota School of Business-Brooklyn Center campus promoted not only the programs offered at the campus but also BC’s Closet, which is an easy way to recycle used professional clothes to pass on to new professional students.
Congratulations to Dalton and Sannes for yet another successful EarthFest event. To learn more about EarthFest and ways that the city of Brooklyn Center is promoting environmental awareness, check out their Facebook page.