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Tracy Hepler

Tracy Hepler

Posted April 16, 2009 | 02:04 PM (EST)

Earth Day is Not Dead...It Just Needed Some Young Blood


Last year the Washington Post declared, "Earth Day is dead." This year, Grist.org decided to "Screw Earth Day." Your Daily Thread.com sought to change all of that and inject some new life into the 39-year-old holiday by celebrating its official launch as the newest online hub for everything green, local and sustainable. We partnered with Pink Cloud Events and BP's Helios House to throw an Earth Month Awareness nighttime party for the Los Angeles Community.

The night brought together an eclectic group from the eco-curious to the eco-warrior in order to bring attention to the various community happenings that will be taking place during the month of April (view a complete listing of L.A. Earth Day events here). You can see that in the City of Angeles, Earth Day is in fact alive and kicking.
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Our location was breathtaking (if I can say so myself). If you haven't heard of BP's Helios House, it is the only LEED certified gas station in southern California. It sells traditional gas (no bio fuels) but the building itself is solar powered, uses rainwater collection, LED lighting and was built using sustainable and recycled materials. It reflects the belief that "small steps in the right direction can make a difference."

Our event was produced by Pink Cloud Events: "This was one of Pink Cloud's favorite parties since we've started producing ecological events in 2006. We had a lot of fun bringing together a variety of earth-friendly elements to the party; starting with the iconic, LEED certified Helios house location, and ending with the positive and boundless energy of the Your Daily Thread community. What made the event most special was the support of all the incredible talent and businesses who contributed their passion and success to bring community, design, education, and fun into the description of Earth Day," says producer Sarah Shewey.

We brought local businesses to our event that promote sustainability and out of the box thinking. With them, it's Earth Day every day. Here is a snapshot of what each of them do:

Harvey's is a Southern California husband and wife company that makes eco chic bags from recycled seatbelts. They had an interactive station where they made buttons for our guests and featured their treecycle (recycled seatbelt) bags.

Purigenex is a non-invasive advanced skincare line that provides the benefits of healthy, youthful skin, without toxic elements like parabens. Guests sampled their products at our event; their face masks were a big hit.

Fresh Pressed is a live silk screening company that has been doing its part to go green by implementing organic tees and tote bags. For this event they went even farther by partnering with Matsui and its Eco-Series Water Based Inks to create eco-friendly live silk screen with water based inks (the first time that this has ever happened at a live event). We used organic cotton tees from Article 1,SOS From Texas and Econscious. The shirts were so popular that we ran out. Sorry to those who weren't able to get one.

The Polite in Public Mobile Photo Booth was a big hit at our event. We chose an Earth themed background and guests were photographed with their fierce, fresh and funky poses. All photographs are taken digitally and you can access your photos online for free.
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Deliver LA was there to showcase its line of eco-forward delivery services using hybrid vehicles (primarilyToyota Priuses) and bicycles. They can deliver "anything, anywhere, anytime."

There is no party without food and drinks so we were thrilled to serve up delicious organic eats from Le Pain Quotidien, recently voted the most eco-friendly restaurant in America (they composted at our event too) and Real Food Daily, a pioneer in contemporary, delicious vegan cuisine. Our bar was sponsored by VeeV, the acai berry spirit from the Amazon Rainforest and New Belgium sustainable (and wind-powered) brewery. We were also proud to serve fair trade and organic Honest Tea and filtered water from Pure Water Technology.

To make this event as green as possible we recycled, composted and sourced our event power from a bio diesel generator from SMS Generators. We also offered our guests Earth incentives, by promoted biking, walking, public transportation and ride sharing for guests attending the event. The Ride Amigos helped us connect individuals coming from the same areas to carpool to our event. Schwinn was generous enough to donated a Madison Road Bike (valued at over $600) to one lucky guest that used one of these forms of alternative transportation. We also partnered with TreePeople to donate the funds from our "Green Date" auction (I auctioned away my lovely partner Lauren Johanson for $200).

To recharge Earth Day we did our best to promote local events and up-and-coming green businesses while showing that you can celebrate the Earth in a new fun way. The Washington Post and Grist.org do have a point though in that Earth Day needs to be engaging and exciting -- because at the end of the day the point of it is to inspire all of us to celebrate the spirit of Earth Day every day. I believe our event helped to do that for the Los Angeles community and Your Daily Thread.com will continue to live out that message and encourage our readers to do the same 365 days a year.

To see the complete details and all photos of our party visit yourdailythread.com/earth-day.