Every elementary school student knows the formula to make green is blue plus yellow, but many adults these days are attempting to mix red, white and blue with the same results. In our very information aware society of today, being eco friendly is not only a lifestyle, but almost a mandate. This guide will provide you with information to make your fourth of July celebration a green party.
-Have your party attendees bring their own cup. Not only are you cutting down the cost by not purchasing disposable counterparts, you’re also eliminating extra landfill waste. Guests could even be encouraged to bring fun and interesting mugs from their personal collection.
-When planning the menu, eat local. Cater from a local mom and pop, or if you’re preparing, purchase ingredients from local farmers’ markets or produce stands. This cuts down on gas emissions from the transport of produce while also investing in the local economy.
-Use living flowers as table centerpieces and decorations instead of cut flowers. Sure the red, white and blue carnations are pretty, but they’re doomed for the trash after the party is over. Purchase potted plants that will continue to contribute to the environment while also bringing color to your table.
-If you must buy plate ware or supplies, be sure to check and thoroughly read the labels. Spend a few extra cents on the goods that are made from recycled materials, and then don’t let the cycle end, but help repeat the process.
-When purchasing your party supplies, break down for big packages. Purchase items in bulk if possible. This not only saves you money but minimizes excess packaging waste.
-The guest list is full and so is your yard. There’s a mass of people right before your eyes, so why not harness that power? Add a good deed to the party. Organize a volunteer effort in your community or and eco conscious activity within the party itself.
-Set up an area just for recycling. Make sure your guests are aware of its location and purpose. Also, have each canister labeled with both a word and picture so that even the youngest guests can participate.
-Fireworks and Independence Day seem to exist synonymously. It’s difficult to picture one without the other. Unfortunately, with the metals, sulfur, coal and other noxious chemicals, it’s not exactly the most eco friendly fourth of July tradition. There are some alternatives. Don’t purchase fireworks to set off at home, take the gang to a local city light show instead. Big productions are beginning the switch to eco friendly fireworks that are not available to the average costumer. Decorate your party with lots of lively colors, although not an exact substitute it can help to outweigh the colorful lights. Pass out noisemakers for some party fun or possibly host a camp fire after the sun goes down. Fires are longer lasting than fireworks and the ash is much less toxic. You could even pass out marshmallows.
-When preparing to fire up the grill, be careful what type of fuel you use. Don’t purchase propane, as it is a non sustainable resource. Go with labels that are sustainably produced charcoal or made from wood. If you’ll be grilling corn on the cob, head to the back yard for skewers. Collect loose twigs, sharpen one end with a pencil sharpener, jab, grill and serve!
-For pack up time, use reusable plastic containers to store food. There’s also a somewhat new and unheard product that can be used rather than plastic wrap. Reusable sandwich wrap is eco friendly, however I have not used it and wonder about its durability.
-At cleanup time, pass out lemon scented hand towels instead of wipes. To make, simply soak small towels in ice water and lemon, then wring them out, roll them up and pass them out still damp. They’re refreshing and also will disinfect.
It’s easy and practical to go green with your Independence Day celebration. Simply think consciously, be aware of what you purchase and be creative. Your green fourth of July party will be an event not likely forgotten!