From Tastes to Technology: Earth Day 2010

This year’s UMMS Earth Day celebration was 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. Event organizers estimated that more than 1,000 people stopped in during the day to test ride electric bikes, see a pedal-powered lighting system, pick up energy saving devices, buy autographed copies of Ed Begley Jr.’s books and sample a variety of natural foods.

 

“It was both an educational and fun event,” said Rebecca Chlapowski, of the Department of Auxiliary Services and coordinator of the Earth Day event. “We had a fantastic mix of green vendors this year, with lots of green give-a-ways.”

Here are some of the highlights from this year's Earth Day:

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View a slide show of Earth Day

  • Attendees were given the opportunity to test ride Pietzo's electric-powered bikes around campus. Outfitted with a rechargeable battery motor, Pietzo's bicycles are designed to 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.
  • First year medical student Max Fraden demonstrated a simple, inexpensive product being deployed to light the developing world and create sustainable business opportunities. Demonstrating the pedal-powered, battery recharging system, Fraden discussed how Nuru Light is improving public health in Rwanda.
  • Fans of Ed Begley Jr. and his colorful, off-the-grid lifestyle were treated to 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.
  • Sweetwilliam Farm in Upton kicked off its 2010 Community Supported Agriculture program with a colorful display where visitors could sign up for the weekly crop-share. For a fixed fee, CSA members receive a share of the farm’s bounty.
  • A variety of natural foods were available to visitors, including maple products from KE Farm, vegan cuisine from Buddha Hut and artisan breads from Great Harvest Bread.
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