True Love Goes Green
Let’s show some love for our planet and make this Valentine’s Day green! We’ve got some ideas that will keep the romance alive and the energy waste minimal. From buying that box of chocolates to planning the day, here are some tips for every couple.
To save the planet and money, plan a romantic energy saving evening at home. Turn down the thermostat and snuggle up to your loved one under a blanket for a romantic film or a quiet evening in front of the fireplace. Leave the car in the driveway and have dinner at home too. When planning dinner, consider incorporating local produce and/or local products. Your bottle of red or white may taste of fruit, chocolate, oak – but can you detect the hint of a healthier planet?Try an organic or local wine.
Set the mood, and lose the electronics for a night. Take some time to connect with each other. Unplug all unnecessary appliances. Turn off your cell and the computers and turn down the lights. Soy or beeswax candles can create a romantic energy-saving ambiance. Whether it be dinner by candlelight or drinks at sunset, soft lighting affects our emotions. Studies suggest that soft lighting evokes a calm feeling throughout our body and can also send the message of beauty, tranquility, and romance.
When you are getting ready for your night in, go ahead and get all dolled up with some eco-friendly products. Blow dryers use a lot of electricity, so consider letting your locks go au naturale.
Many gifts have unique and valuable stories that can add to your relationship and help the world around you. Many companies are now making gifts from recycled materials. Instead of those cliche roses, try getting your significant other a seasonal arrangement of local blooms or a beautiful native potted plant.
Whether your love stands tall or is just beginning to bud, planting a tree is a great way to honor it and a meaningful gift that will last. The tree’s life is like the life of your love, and we don’t mean that in a cheesy way. Trees also help reduce stormwater pollution while keeping your neighborhood looking great.
If your relationship is not quite ready for a tree, go for some organic fair trade chocolates or a homemade card.
We hope you will try some of these tips this Valentine’s Day! Remember, true love goes green! For more ideas on greening your Valentine’s Day, check out the Sierra’s Club Valentine’s Day page.
Septic System Woes?
Did you know that a failing septic system can require expensive repairs, pose a serious health risk to your family and neighbors, and have negative impacts on water quality? Bluegrass Greensource awarded five Garrard County homeowners cost-share grants to repair or install septic systems at their homes. Each grant will pay 80% of the repair or installation cost, while the homeowner is responsible for the remaining 20%.
To be eligible for the grants, homeowners must reside within the Dix River watershed in Boyle, Garrard, or Lincoln Counties and must attend a one-hour workshop about septic system care and maintenance. Following the workshop, participants can apply for a cost-share grant for system repairs or installation, or for a free septic tank pump out (a regular maintenance task that is recommended every 3 to 5 years).
The next free septic system workshop will be held on Tuesday, March 4th from 6:00 to 7:00 PM at the Junction City Community Center (724 W. Shelby Street). Please contact Sandy Bottoms at firstname.lastname@example.org or (859) 266-1572 to register!
Bluegrass Greensource will offer a series of free septic workshops over the next two years, as well as a series of watershed awareness festivals in local communities and water-related activities in area K-12 classrooms. These activities are part of a grant program funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under section 319(h) of the Clean Water Act through the Kentucky Division of Water.
Robots, Raptors and Race Cars, Oh My!
What do robots, raptors, and race cars have in common? These were just a few of the hands-on activities available to students at the 30th annual 16th District Science Fair. While the 690 participating students were waiting for the judging and the awarding portions of the fair, they were treated to amazing activities and educational information from over 30 community exhibitors at Science Sensation.
All of the exhibitors contributed exceptional learning opportunities to the Science Fair. Delta Sigma Theta Sorority gave students the opportunity to handle brain samples, a fetal pig, and horse eyeballs. Newton’s Attic kept the students occupied with a robot that students controlled to shoot a basketball through a hoop. Buckley Hills Audubon Society drew a large crowd with their bald eagle and owl exhibit. Rosie the Recycling Bin and Louie the Lightning Bug greeted students reminding them to recycle and conserve energy.
Showing practical applications of science, Bluegrass Greensource helped the Science Fair become more environmentally friendly by incorporating recycling into the event. This year’s fair featured dual stream containers to collect waste. Each container was labeled with items at the fair that are recyclable and over 25 pound of recyclable waste was recovered!
Bluegrass Greensource would like to thank Kentucky American Water, Bryan Station High School, the 150 volunteers, the exhibitors, the students and their families that made this day possible.
The 16th District Science Fair is a collaboration between Fayette County Public Schools and Kentucky American Water. Bluegrass Greensource is contracted through KAW to organize the Science Sensation portion of the science fair.
Thanks to a generous grant from the Walmart Foundation, Bluegrass Greensource will be able to expand our successful WasteBuster Program to schools in Boyle, Clark and Madison Counties. The goal of this program will be to increase school wide recycling, improve learning and save the school systems money.
The WasteBuster Program is an expansion of a program we successfully completed in Anderson, Garrard, Lincoln and Jessamine counties, and mirrors the award winning LiveGreenLexington Partner Schools Program in Fayette County. In each of these counties, school districts have shown increased recycling rates, reduction in their landfill bound waste, and improved student test scores. Fayette County has also shown a significant cost savings because of their participation.
Bluegrass Greensource educators will work with principals, custodians, cafeteria mangers and teachers to provide recycling bins, conduct waste audits, and work with students in the classroom. Greensource educators will facilitate hands on classroom activities to educate students about recyclable items and waste reduction practices they can implement at their schools. All participating schools in Boyle, Clark and Madison also have the opportunity to apply for a waste reduction grant to implement specific initiatives in their school.
Bluegrass Greensource is excited about the opportunity to work with schools, staff and students in these three counties! If you are a teacher in Boyle, Clark or Madison County and would like to participate, please contact Blair@bgGreensource.org.
Over 100 pledged to Get Outdoors in 2014 through our annual New Year’s Resolution Program, and Bluegrass Greensource would like to congratulate Joshua Saxton for winning the $100 gift card from Kentucky State Parks!
We would like to thank the following people who agreed to publically commit to Get Outdoors in 2014 — Stephanie Vihlidal, Kenna Phelps, Laurie Davison, Lauren Monahan, Shanda Cecil, Christina Zavos, Melinda W., Ashley Osborne, Roberta Burnes, Alyse Garrard, Kenya Stump, Burley Thomas, Lori Minter, Eric Comley, Robin Stewart, Jamison Barton, Tracy C, Suzanna Weisenfeld, Beth Kelly, Nicholas Larkey, Jeri Howell, Hannelore Elliot, Tanya Ewing, Gayle Bourne, Linda Johnson, Mark Tower, Trudy Robards, Leann Brown, Chris Tyler, Charlie Lanter, Joyce Fister-Daley, Rachel Ford, Sabrina Oaks, Karen Hatter, Melody, Jaci Williams, Kathryn Turbek, Amy Sohner, Gene Slusher, Storey Slone, Chris Woolery, Eamonn FritzGerald, Amanda Black, Jennifer Mitchell, Bill Settles, Joey Svec, Joshua Saxton, Ashley, Mike Reed, Anita Courtney, Paula Dunn, Dawna Scripps, Cheryl Pena, and Jan McKinney.
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