From Tastes to Technology: Earth Day 2010

This year’s UMMS Earth Day celebration will be the biggest yet, with more than 50 vendors and groups showcasing sustainable products and programs in the Medical School’s lobbies and the Faculty Conference Room on April 22 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Drop in during the day to test ride an electric bike, see a pedal-powered lighting system that is helping the developing world, pick up energy saving devices, buy autographed copies of Ed Begley Jr.’s books, sample a variety of natural foods and much more. 

“It’s going to be both educational and fun,” said Rebecca Chlapowski, of the Department of Auxiliary Services and coordinator of the Earth Day event. “We have a fantastic mix of green vendors this year, with lots of green give-a-ways.” 

Here are some Earth Day highlights:

  • Pietzo hybrid electric bicycles (www.pietzo.com): If arriving hot and sweaty to work is keeping you from biking to campus, check out the Pietzo battery-operated bikes. Several models, including one that folds for easy storage, will be available on Earth Day to test ride. The bikes can be pedaled in normal fashion, or used with a “pedal assist” feature, for an electric boost so you can make it up hills without breaking a sweat.
  • Nuru Light (www.nurulight.com): Learn how this simple, inexpensive product is lighting the dark and creating sustainable business opportunities in the developing world. UMMS student Max Fraden, who has worked for Nurulight in Africa for two years, will demonstrate the product’s recharging pedal generator system from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Living with Ed (www.livingwithed.net): Fans of Ed Begley Jr. and his colorful, off-the-grid lifestyle, can buy autographed copies of his best-selling book, Living with Ed: A Guide to the Eco-friendly Life, and his recent release, Ed Begley Jr.’s Guide to Sustainable Living. DVDs of the reality show “Living with Ed: Seasons 1 & 2,” will also be available for purchase.
  • Sweetwilliam Farm (www.sweetwilliamfarm.biz): If you can’t grow your own food, Sweetwilliam’s Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is the next best thing. The Upton farm will kick off its 2010 CSA program on Earth Day. CSA members pay a fixed fee in exchange for a weekly share of the farm’s bounty. Get information about the program and sign up.
  • Tastes of green: Treat your taste buds to a delicious variety of natural foods, including maple products from KE Farm, vegan cuisine from Buddha Hut, artisan breads from Great Harvest Bread, and more. Some samples are free, others will be sold, so make sure to bring some green cash.

For more information, contact Rebecca Chlapowski at 508-856-6713 or Rebecca.Chlapowski@umassmed.edu.