Eco-Fest DFMWR raise awareness
FORT CARSON Colo. Kaiden Mima 6 strums the string on an instrument made from recycled materials. Eric The Not Junk Man West brought 40 instruments hes made to Saturdays Eco-Fest and Fun Fair.

FORT CARSON, Colo. -- Don’t listen to Kermit the Frog it’s easy being green. That was the message at the first annual Eco-Fest and Fun Fair, which took place Saturday at the Special Events Center.

“We wanted to have an event that covered easy steps to be green,” said Gigi Holman, an event organizer for the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation.

The event featured recycling games, craft tables and booths educating attendees on carbon footprints, waste management and Leave No Trace practices, a worldwide campaign that encourages environmental stewardship.

“The average person produces 4.5 pounds of garbage each day,” said Susi Rice, a volunteer at the Waste Management table.

“We estimate that 70 percent of that garbage can be recycled.”

Attendees learned about the breakdown of everyday items and the ways in which
they can be recycled.

“A plastic bottle takes 450 years to break down,” Rice said. “An aluminum can takes 200-500 years. Styrofoam never breaks down. The plastic items can be melted down and reused to make things like insulation and carpet.”

“Sustainability is very important to Fort Carson and DFMWR,” said Ann Edinger, chief of DFMWR Events and Entertainment. “We put out recycle bins at every event, and we use Smart cars when we’re driving on post.”
DFMWR took an extra step to ensure the Eco-Fest was as green as possible.

“We’re trying to do everything recyclable,” Holman said. “There’s not a lot of paper.
No plastic bottles. The café has recyclable containers. We have an electronics recycling center, which gives people an opportunity to take care of their electronics responsibly.”

Children were able to participate in a bicycle rodeo, which taught participants the rules of the road, as well as arts and crafts, which used recyclable materials.

“My favorite part is riding my bike without training wheels,” said Dante Barta, 7, who rode through the bicycle rodeo several times.

Other highlights included entertainment by the “Not Junk Man,” who brought instruments made from recycled materials, and Spider-Man, who taught the children about taking care of the environment.

The 1st Battalion, 2nd Aviation Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division Family Readiness Group provided food and drinks in recyclable containers.

In the parking lot, volunteers from Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers collected electronics to recycle, including several computer monitors and a CD player from 1982.

“About 300 people came to the event,” Edinger said. “We plan on doing this every year in conjunction with the installation’s commitment to sustainability.

It’s hard to make that move, but with each step we’re getting there.”

Page last updated Thu May 26th, 2011 at 12:56