On Sunday April 20th Thousands of people saw varying shades of green at EarthFair yesterday at Balboa Park in San Diego.
On a nice cool, cloud-free day, the 19-year-old festival that organizers call the largest environmental fair in the world probably lived up to its billing. Traffic backed up for miles on state Route 163 before noon with visitors trying to reach the fair.
When people finally arrived, they found showcases for green technologies, artwork made from recycled materials, a children’s parade, live music and â€œThe Cleaner Car Concourse,â€ featuring vehicles that run on alternative fuels.
They also may have spotted a vine-draped child on stilts, free belly-dancing lessons and a few environmental juxtapositions, including gas-powered generators spewing fumes next to the Zero Waste San Diego booth.
Exhibitors form the heart of EarthFair, and this year there were more than ever â€“ nearly 340. Some, including the Defenders of Wildlife and the Sierra Club, have well-established emerald credentials. But a new crop of startups â€“ a fair-trade-chocolate maker, an eco-caterer and a soy-candle maker â€“ were there trying to make green names for themselves.
Aslo amoungst the participants A new Vintage Clothing store in San Diego named Factory Vintage attracted a number of patrons to their booth with a bright colored spinning wheel, and wonderful prizes including sun flowers and Gift certificates to their eco-friendly shop. Once the wheel was spung you might loose a turn, hit the jackpot, or have to answer a question related to textiles and their effect on the environment.
â€œThere’s been an explosion of green businesses,â€ said Carolyn Chase, one of the fair’s founders. â€œIt really demonstrates to us the green movement has arrived in the marketplace. Green capitalism has taken root.â€
But the green hues with some of the exhibitors were not always easily spotted. The San Diego Union Tribune pointed out that There was the chiropractor offering free computerized screenings, and the San Diego Middle Eastern Dance Association showing people how to do those belly dances. They were selling reusable tote bags.
Northrop Grumman, a $32 billion defense and technology company, had a booth in the children’s activity
area to help children make paper airplanes. Next door was Bank of America San Diego, where children spun a wheel for a chance to win pencils, an Earth Day necklace, sunscreen, lollipops or Frisbees. The flying disks were made from recycled tires.
All in all it was a great time