Christena Morris with her painting of a Monopoly game board.
U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin (center, left) and Green Fest Co-Chair Janeen Solberg cut the ribbon at the band stand in Shafer Park to open last year's annual festival. Joining the ceremony are other members of the Green Fest Committee (green t-shirts) and many local and state officials and other festival supporters. Tim Rowland (far right), author and newspaper columnist, served as honorary guest master of ceremony. Photo by Otto Solberg
Showing off Green Fest t-shirts from the first three years of the festival are (l-r) vendor Susan Simonson (2009), Darrell Jones (2010) and wife Amy Jones (2011). Amy is a founder of both the Green Fest Committee and the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, the general sponsor of the festival. Photo by Barbara Wetzel
Photos by Henry
The Boonsboro Green Fest was established on the Saturday of Mother's Day weekend in May 2009 to promote conservation, recycling and sustainable living within our community. Every year since, the Green Fest's attendance, number of vendors, variety of activities and recycling opportunities have increased.
The 4th annual spring festival, sponsored by the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.on Saturday, May 12, 2012, rain or shine, at Boonsboro's historic Shafer Park. Admission is FREE.
The festival will feature more than 100 vendors, a variety of food concessions, children's activities, speakers, door prizes, entertainment, and the Recycling Zone, which will include an array of recycling stations.
Photo by Barbara
The Yardslippers, an eclectic band from Frederick, Md., give a lively performance at the Bandstand during the 2011 Green Fest.
Everything from solar energy systems to composting to fair trade products to heirloom tomato plants to clothing and sports equipment swaps to jewelry and rain barrels to information booths and exhibits will be featured throughout the park.
Vendors wishing to participate may apply on line beginning on Jan. 1, 2012. The deadline for applications is April 2, 2012. Vendors will be required to pay a $20 registration fee for each 10-foot-square space. See the Vendor Standards and Practices here.
A printed program guide, including a map and list of vendors and sponsors will be available to attendees. In advance of the festival, committee members will be distributing bookmarks and posters promoting the events of the day.
Lapel sticker worn
by the 2,200 attendees
at last year's
Scores of volunteers will be needed throughout the day, helping vendors with setup, passing out programs, collecting recyclables in the Recycling Zone, helping in the Kid Zone with the children's activities, directing traffic and cleaning up the park. Volunteers must sign up in advance and by May 9, 2012. Volunteer Form
The committee is determined to produce an event that is free and open to the public. To help defray expenses associated with promotion and production, the committee gratefully accepts monetary donations and in-kind contributions. Five levels of giving have been established. They are Green Leaf ($300 & over), Gold Leaf ($200-299), Silver Leaf ($100-199), Bronze Leaf ($50-99) and Green Fest Patron ($49 & under).
Special sponsorship opportunities are available, including underwriting the program guide printing cost and purchasing green lamp post banners. Go to the sponsor page for details.
If you are able to help in any way, please make checks payable to "Boonsboro Green Fest" and mail to: Boonsboro Green Fest, PO Box 64, Boonsboro, MD 21713-0064. If you have questions or would like to make a comment, please email the committee or write to the above address.
Photo by Barbara Wetzel
Several members of the 2011 Green Fest Committee proudly show off the official green t-shirts during their final meeting before the third annual festival. They are (l-r) Kathy Vesely, Leslie Haardt, Brigitte Schmidt, Amy Jones, Laura Schnackenberg, Rosemary James and Janeen Solberg.
Green Fest organizers
Working with Green Fest 2012 Co-Chairs Janeen Solberg and Barbara Wetzel again this year are returning committee members: Sieg Gooding, Sean and Leslie Haardt, Harvey Hoch, Rosemary James, Amy Jones, Frances Lynch, Dan Murphy, Brigitte Schmidt, Laura Schnackenberg, Rick Schulman and Kathy Vesely. Washington County liaisons to the committee are Anthony Drury and Cliff Engle.
Ms. Solberg also is the founding chair of the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, which sponsors the Green Fest, and serves on the Boonsboro Town Council with Ms. Wetzel; Ms. James is the current chair of the Recycling Task Force; Ms. Vesely serves as chair of the Washington County Solid Waste Advisory Committee, and Ms. Schnackenberg is a member of the town's Park Board, which oversees the operation of the expanding Shafer Park, location of the annual festival.
Mr. Hoch is the retired Washington County recycling coordinator, while Mr. Drury is the current recycling coordinator. Mr. Engle is the director of landfill operations for the county.
4th annual Green Fest
a smashing success
BOONSBORO, Md. (May 14, 2012) - Mix together 142 eager Eco-friendly vendors with plenty of inquisitive spectators, a multitude of recycling opportunities, a generous amount of fun and music, and what do you get? A successful Green Fest, that’s what.
Well, it wouldn’t hurt to have perfect weather, lots of tasty food, homemade ice cream and lemonade, and 100 volunteers, either.
The fourth annual Boonsboro Green Fest went off without a hitch on Saturday, May 12, in beautiful Shafer Park, according to Green Fest Committee co-Chairs Janeen Solberg and Barbara Wetzel.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony emceed by local broadcaster and weatherman Lou Scally launched the event and was attended by local, state and federal officials, as well as the committee members, some sponsors, local school administrators, and a group of Brownie Scouts, who helped school superintendent Dr. Clayton Wilcox cut the ribbon.
The Boonsboro Recycling Task Force is the general sponsor of the Fest. There were also 55 sponsoring partners who contributed funds and in-kind services, and were underwriters for the printed materials, lamp-post banners, entertainment, the paper shredding service, and the trailer and tent that formed the new stage.
“Every year we are amazed by the number of sponsors who come forward to help us with operational and promotional expenses,” said Wetzel, adding that the number of sponsors has increased from 12 the first year to 55 this year. More than 70 businesses, vendors, organizations and individuals also contributed door prizes.
'I love Green Fest' label count
Estimated attendance was close to 3,500 for the seven-hour event, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Last year 2,200 attended. The festival used the lapel sticker method again this year, whereby each attendee received an “I love Green Fest” sticker and then the remaining stickers were counted to determine the attendance figure.
“We couldn’t be happier,” said Solberg. “It was terrific to see the turnout. It just goes to show how much people are trying to do the right thing where our environment is concerned. I was especially impressed with how many families are getting in the habit of saving things all year to be recycled at the Green Fest.”
A wide variety of recyclable items were collected in the drive-thru loop, including electronics, sneakers, TVs, bicycles, sewing machines, unwanted prescription drugs, eyeglasses, block Styrofoam, flower pots, medical equipment, books, cell phones, ink cartridges and denim.
Swaps were big hit
The St. James Catholic Church gathered clothing during the week preceding the Fest for their Gently Used Clothing Swap and Sale. The tables in a large pavilion were piled high with clothing and accessories. Nearby, the Boonsboro Athletic Boosters were collecting and distributing sports equipment and clothing during their own swap and sale. In addition, the Boonsboro Band Boosters collected used instruments to be used the school’s music program.
Vendors were selling herbs, vegetable plants and shrubs, solar and geothermal systems, garden sheds, original art bird houses on weather-worn barn wood, handcrafted wooden ballpoint pens, jewelry made from sea glass and old silverware, refurbished wooden trunks of all sizes, handbags made from recycled materials, food co-op memberships, rain barrels, and fair trade coffee, among hundreds of items.
People staffing informational booths talked about land preservation, saving waterways, forests and tree planting, composting and recycling.
New stage popular
A new covered stage - using a 48-foot flatbed trailer and a similarly-sized white tent - was home to two musical acts, the Yardslippers of Frederick, and Ray Owen, a one-man musical act from York, Pa. Spectators could listen to music as they had a bite to eat. The PA system carried the music throughout the park.
During the day, five featured speakers made presentations about composting, Boonsboro’s new curbside recycling program, careers in alternative energy, stink bugs and getting motivated to do good works in the community. More than 70 door prizes were also given out after each presentation.
The food vendors were extremely busy in the middle of the day when attendees were looking for lunch or a snack. Lines were 30 people long at times. Food choices included Greek salads and pita sandwiches, hot dogs, pulled pork sandwiches, pizza, fried Cajun catfish, cupcakes and soft ice cream.
Kids stay busy all day
With only bottle caps, children created a huge mosaic of “The Scream,” the famous painting by Edvard Munch, which sold at auction this month for $119 million. An outline of the painting was drawn on a large bulletin board by the Boonsboro High School art students of Todd Geiman, and the kids glued on hundreds of brilliantly colored bottle caps.
Kids of all ages were drawn to the puppet shows put on by the Boonsboro Middle School students of Sabrina Blair, and to The Twister game on the lawn near the Kids Zone pavilion. Children and adults alike were entertained by West Virginia singer-songwriter Tony M. Music, who performed throughout the day at the pavilion.
Admission was free to all. The First Hose Fire Company opened its lot behind the gas station for free parking.
get under way for May 12
festivities in Shafer Park
Boonsboro, Md. (May 10, 2012) - The rains have come and gone and left Shafer Park as green as ever for the fourth annual Boonsboro Green Fest on Saturday, May 12.
The town's talented crew has trimmed the grass and tidied up the beautiful municipal park as last-minute preparations are in high gear for the Fest that will feature a record 142 vendors.
Some vendors will be starting to set up Friday evening, but most will be scurrying around early Saturday morning to get ready for the 10 a.m. opening of the Fest, which will run until 5 p.m.
The new stage is almost ready for the performers, as the Atlantic Tent Rentals of Walkersville topped off a D.M.Bowman flatbed trailer with a 48-foot tent. Bales of straw will be placed in front of the stage and a 15-foot Green Fest banner will hang from the front.
STAGE STAGED - The crew members from Atlantic Tent Rentals of Walkersville proudly display their handiwork after installing a 48-foot tent atop a flatbed trailer which will be used as the stage for the Green Fest on Saturday. You'll have to attend to see the entire setup. Crew members are (from left) owner Hank, Tom and Nick.
142 vendors registered;
activities set for Saturday
of Mother's Day weekend
BOONSBORO, Md. (April 30, 2012) - Organizers of the fourth annual Boonsboro Green Fest couldn’t be happier.
The total number of vendors who signed up for the Saturday, May 12 event reached 142 before registration was closed. In addition, 53 sponsors have stepped forward with monetary and in-kind gifts and services in support of the spring festival in Shafer Park.
Popular broadcaster to emcee
Guest master of ceremonies Lou Scally, local TV weatherman and broadcaster, will preside over the official ribbon-cutting ceremony beginning at 9:45 a.m. at the Bandstand. The official ribbon-cutters will be Washington County Superintendent of School Clayton Wilcox and two specially chosen Girl Scouts, in honor of the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts of America.
Vendors offer variety
Vendors will be selling Eco-friendly products and services, and providing information about programs and systems, such as solar and geothermal energy systems. The product list includes: herbs and vegetable plants, health care products, jewelry made from recycled and re-purposed materials, art on reclaimed wood, restored trunks, totes, bags, pottery, artisan cheeses, rain barrels and composting kits. Even a developer of green houses will be on hand.
Bring your recyclables
Collection stations for dozens of kinds of recyclables will be set up in the parking area near the Community Center. Attendees are urged to check out the list in advance and then drop off items in the drive-thru, drop-off loop before parking in the free lot on Stouffer Avenue, behind the gas station.
For the first time, residents will be able to recycle television sets. Each household may drop off only one set; no consoles will be accepted. The Washington County government is waiving the $10 per unit fee for the event.
Shop at popular swaps
One of the major features of the Green Fest is St. James Catholic Church’s highly successful Gently Used Clothing Swap & Sale in Pavilion #1. A Sports Equipment Swap & Sale will be located near the clothing pavilion. Collection for clothing and equipment will be conducted together at the church.
Volunteers will collect thousands of items prior to and during the fest. Donors will be given vouchers, which then can be used to “purchase” items. Items may also be purchased at reasonable prices.
More than 4,000 items of clothing were swapped last year. Clothing that is not swapped or sold will be donated to Children in Need of Washington County. The sports equipment left over will be donated to local youth programs.
Articles of clothing and sports equipment may be dropped off in advance at St. James Church, corner of Ford Avenue and Main Street in Boonsboro, at four times in the week preceding the fest:
The Boonsboro Band Boosters will also be collecting musical instruments at their booth during Green Fest.
New home for entertainment
A new stage is planned for the area between the clothing swap pavilion and the concession stand so spectators seated at the picnic tables will have an unobstructed view of the entertainers. Music will also be carried throughout the park via the audio system. A flatbed trailer, donated by D.M. Bowman Corp. will form the deck of the stage. A tent will be erected on top to form the stage and serve to protect the performers.
Returning to the Green Fest is the popular eclectic band from Frederick, The Yardslippers, who will be performing from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Ray Owen, a Grammy-nominated performer from Gettysburg, will bring his unique one-man family show to the Green Fest stage for the first time - from 2-5 p.m.
Four sponsors are underwriting the performers' appearances. They are Antietam Cable, Cronise Corp., Donna Brightman and Thompson Gas. For the fourth straight year, the printed program brochure is being sponsored by Michele R. Shaffer, CPA.
West Virginia singer-songwriter Tony M. Music will perform his original songs periodically during the day in the Kids Zone. Many of his compositions are written for children, but can be enjoyed by people of all ages. He has performed at previous Green Fests. His CD's will be available for sale at the Recycling Task Force tent near the footbridge.
Fun all day in Kids Zone
Other activities, such as puppet shows, Pledge to the Earth, a scavenger hunt, and crafts, will occupy children all day in the Kids Zone. Some of the vendors nearby will also offer activities, products and services for children and families.
A Twister Field will be marked off and organized games will be held at different times for elementary, middle and high school students, and adults.
Students from Boonsboro Elementary School are doing special projects for Green Fest. At noon, Christina Hammer-Atkins’ second grade class will talk about how they made bird houses out of recycled materials. A magnet teacher, Mrs. Hammer-Atkins' was named last week the Washington County Teacher of the Year.
At 2 p.m., Annie Andres’ third graders will hold a roundtable discussion about Fibonacci Numbers (numbers found in nature) and will display their work.
More green lamp-post banners
A total of 20 green lamp-post banners will grace light poles in the square in downtown Boonsboro, along North Main Street near the park, and on the poles along Shafer Park Drive, approaching the park. The banner program started last year with nine banners. The sponsors of this 11 new banners are: AC&T, Antietam Spirits, BodySense PT, Eby's Garage, Fit In Boonsboro, Gifts Inn BoonsBoro, High Tech Powder Coating, Inn BoonsBoro, Reese's Home Improvement, South Mountaiin Creamery, Vest Pizzeria.
It is hoped by festival planners that eventually all of the 40-some lamp post in town and in the park will be adorned with the green banners during Green Fest Week.
The Community Center will be the venue for the five speaker presentations which will be held throughout the day. Their schedule is:
10:30 am - Composting: Black Gold
11:30 am - Curbside Recycling in Boonsboro
12:30 pm - Awakening the Dream
2:00 pm - Career Opportunities & Trends in Solar, Wind & Geo-Thermal Technology
3:30 pm - Stink Bugs
Nearly 70 door prizes will be awarded to lucky ticket holders after each speaker’s presentation in the Community Center.
Phil Ruth, a Bikes for the World collector par excel-lance from Hagerstown, loads up bicycles at the 2011 Green Fest for their long trip to a Central American country. He'll be back this year doing his volunteer work to help folks in developing countries get to work and go to school. Help Phil by bringing your unused bikes to the Green Fest's drive-thru, drop-off Recycling Zone. Phil will give you a great big smile and a bigger "thank you." Oh, and donations are tax deductible. Tax receipts are available. Photo by Barbara Wetzel
Quick reference guide
for recycling at Green Fest
Scroll down to see where everything ends up
SWAPS, SALES, SHREDDING & DRUG TURN-IN
1. Containers, bags, packing material
2. Jars, pull tabs, medicine bottles
4. Clothing, hangers, sneakers
5. Books, magazines
6. Miscellaneous items
7. Computers, electronics, phones, cartridges
8. Medical equipment, eyeglasses
10. Household recyclables
A list of the collectors
And how items are recycled & re-used?
MORE TO COME
More than 90 vendors
sign up as deadline nears
BOONSBORO, Md. (March 23, 2012) - The number of vendors is sure to surpass last year's total as more than 90 have signed up already for the 4th annual Green Fest on May 12. The application deadline for vendors is April 2. A record 113 vendors set up shop last year.
Plans are being finalized by the Green Fest Committee. Besides lining up the vendors, members are also in the process of firming up details for the children's activities, speakers, recycling drop-off zone, concessions, entertainment and event recycling/composting. Posters are being distributed, along with promotional bookmarks.
The deadline for sponsorships and door prize donations is also April 2.
New stage, more music
to highlight annual fest
BOONSBORO, Md. (Feb. 27, 2012) - Vendors are registering at a brisk clip and the Boonsboro Green Fest committee is adding more features to the popular spring event, set for Saturday, May 12 at Shafer Memorial Park.
Admission and parking are free for the Mother’s Day weekend festival, which runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Indications are that the number of vendors will top last year’s record of 113, as 60 have already signed up for the 4th annual event. The deadline to register is April 2.
The committee urges vendors to act soon, so they are assured of a space. The $20 registration fee for a 10-square-foot space has remained the same over the years to encourage environmentally conscientious individuals, small groups and non-profit organizations to participate. To sign up, go to the Vendors' page.
Vendors are being placed in seven categories on the website and in the printed program/brochure which will be distributed the day of the festival. The categories are:
Eco-Home & Living Sustainable
Agriculture & Gardening, Renewable Energy
Health & Wellness
Food & Refreshments
Recycling Collection Zone.
To make entertainment more accessible, a new covered stage will be set up near the picnic table area for the expanded music program. The committee hopes this will make it more convenient for spectators to see and hear the acts. The Yardslippers, an eclectic band from Frederick, will perform in the morning. During the afternoon, Ray Owen, a one-person act from Gettysburg, Pa., is expected to perform his green-themed acts for people of all ages.
The committee is looking for a vendor to set up a water station for attendees to fill up their reusable water bottles. The feature was added last year and proved very popular.
Dozens of volunteers are needed. If you are interested, sign up on line. Volunteer registration deadline is May 9. Students may earn SSL (student service learning) hours, but only if they sign up by May 9, according to Volunteer Coordinator Kathy Vesely.
Pavilion No. l will be filled with thousands of articles of clothing for the annual Gently Used Clothing Swap & Sale sponsored by St. James Catholic Church. Nearby will be a Sports Equipment Swap. Articles for both swaps can be dropped off in advance at the church at specified times (to be announced later) during the week before the Green Fest.
Speakers will be giving presentations all day in the Community Center at the park and attendees at the programs will be eligible to win door prizes after each program.
The recycling drop-off zone in the parking lot will again be filled with collectors of a wide array of recyclables, including computers, ink cartridges, cell phones, old sneakers, Styrofoam blocks, wine corks, cardboard, books, flower pots and nursery trays and wire clothes hangers. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. only, prescription drugs can be turned in and a free paper shredding truck will accept up to four boxes of paper per person.
The Boonsboro Recycling Task Force is the general sponsor of the event, while many generous sponsoring partners donate funds and in-kind services.
Official Event of the
Town of Boonsboro
Banner design by DM Designs/Photo by Barbara Wetzel
BUY A BANNER - Businesses, organizations and individuals may purchase green lamppost banners ($150 each) and have them displayed from year to year, for the life of the banner. The sponsor's name appears on both sides of each banner. The banners eventually will grace all of the more than 30 lamp posts in the town of Boonsboro during Green Fest Week each year. Above is a sample banner which is sponsored by the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, the general sponsor of the event. Be a sponsor now.
(See list of sponsors: scroll down to bottom)
sustains Green Fest
For the first three years, the Green Fest Committee has been honored to count as its supporters scores of businesses, organizations and individuals which have graciously come forward to help sponsor this worthwhile community event. See last year's sponsor list.
It is only through monetary and in-kind contributions that the festival can remain free to attendees. Contributions are used to promote the festival, pay for printed materials and offer special features, such as musical performances. The only other source of operating income is the modest registration fee ($20) charged to vendors.
There is no paid staff - only the volunteer Green Fest Committee, which begins working on the event more than six months in advance. Eight of the original 10 original members of the committee are still volunteering on the committee. Talk about sustainability!
The originator and the general sponsor of the event is the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, a small group of civic-minded individuals who donate their time and energy to improving their community through education and outreach. The Green Fest is only one of their projects.
Ways to become a sponsor
You, your business or your organization can become a sponsor by making a monetary (or in-kind) donation, purchase one or more lamppost banners or donate a door prize. All sponsors and door prize donors, along with links to their websites, are listed on this page of the Green Fest website and in the event program, which is handed out the day of the event.
The levels of giving are:
Banner Sponsor ($150 each)
You can purchase one or more green banners, which are mounted on the street lampposts in Boonsboro during Green Fest Week. Eventually, all of the more than 30 lampposts will be adorned with the banners, which will be used from year to year as long as they are in good repair. Sponsor banners purchased this year could be used for many years to come... for a one-time cost of $150 each!
Donate a Door Prize
Door prizes and gift certificates of any value are welcome. The prizes are handed out to lucky winners after each speaker's presentation in the Community Center. Five popular programs are being planned again this year. See list of door prizes.
2012 Sponsoring Partners
Green Leaf ($300 & up)
Michele R. Shaffer, CPA
Cronise Corporation, General Contractors
(entertainment & stage underwriter)
Turn the Page Bookstore
(bookmark & paper shredder underwriter)
DM Designs, LLC
(Kids Zone sponsor and entertainment & stage underwriter)
Eby's Garage, LLC
(entertainment & stage underwriter)
D.M. Bowman, Inc.
Gold Leaf ($200-$299)
Cochran Auctioneers & Associates, Ltd.
(entertainment & stage underwriter)
Bonnie's at the Red Byrd
Silver Leaf ($100-$199)
Reese's Home Improvement
Fit in Boonsboro
Vesta Pizzeria & Family Restaurant
Gifts Inn BoonsBoro
South Mountain Women's Health Center
South Mountain Creamery
High Tech Powder Coating
Antietam Tree & Turf
Your Comfort Services, Inc.
Greenbrier Baptist Church
Washington County Solid Waste Department
Bronze Leaf ($50-$99)
Cedar Ridge Soaps
Green Bamboo Quality Skin Care
Under the Same Sun
Boonsboro Historical Society
301-432-5300 . 301-432-7030
Shepherd's Spring, Inc.
Boonsboro Wellness Center
Flynn & Son Electric
Potomac Street Creamery
Weiss Bros. of Hagerstown, Inc.
Harmon Builders, LLC
Mountain View Solar
Home Energy Team of WMD
Icing Bakery & Cafe
Green Fest Patron (up to $49)
Lydia, Oh, Lydia!
Habitat for Humanity of Washington County/ReStore
Western Maryland Veg Life Group
The Motorcycle Center of Maryland
Young Living Essential Oils
Grandma Whimsy's Cupboard
Milestone Solar Consultants
Vendors listed for 2012
Includes collectors of recyclables (scroll down)
ECO-HOME & LIVING
Blacksmith Guild of Western Maryland facebook page - Demonstrating blacksmithing skills and techniques.
SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE & GARDENING
CONSERVATION & RECYCLING
HEALTH & WELLNESS
FOOD & REFRESHMENTS (Pavilion #2)
RECYCLING COLLECTION ZONE
BOONSBORO, Md. (January 2012) - The fourth annual Boonsboro Green Fest might be five months away, but vendors should start planning now if they want to participate in the event slated for May 12, 2012, in the town’s Shafer Park.
Click here for information that will direct you to the application form. Fill out the form and email it to the committee or print and mail it to: Boonsboro Green Fest, PO Box 64, Boonsboro, MD 21713, along with your registration fee. Checks should be made payable to Boonsboro Green Fest.
The registration fee again this year is $20 for a 10-foot square space. Additional 10-foot square spaces are $20 each. Vendors must provide their own tables and canopies.
Registration fees and sponsorships help defray the cost of printing, advertisements and materials. The festival, along with parking, is free to attendees; more than 2,200 attended the event last year.
The registration application deadline is April 2; however, the Green Fest committee urges vendors to apply as soon as possible, as there are limited spaces available. Each year, the number of vendors has increased. More than 100 vendors filled the park last year.
The Mother’s Day weekend festival is sponsored by the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, whose mission is to promote recycling and conservation through service and education. The Task Force meets at 7 p.m. each third Tuesday at the Community Center in Shafer Park. Attendance is open to the public.
The Green Fest has been designated as an official event of the Town of Boonsboro.
ALL DECKED OUT in her flower dress and tree-adorned face, Elizabeth Guenther takes a stroll with a refreshing cone during the 2011 Green Fest at Shafer Park. Elizabeth is the daughter of Jennifer Guenther, owner of Enkore Kids - one of the more than 100 vendors taking part in last year's event. (Photo by Barbara Wetzel)
2012 Green Fest Door Prizes
To be eligible to win door prizes, you must attend one of the speakers' presentations at the Community Center. Check out the topics and schedule here.
(List updated April 5, 2012)
Task Force members are Chair Rosemary James*, Secretary Amy Jones* and members Sean and Leslie Haardt, Harvey Hoch*, Frances Lynch, Amanda Maynard, Brigitte Schmidt*, Laura Schnackenberg*, Janeen Solberg*, Kathy Vesely* and Barbara Wetzel*. County liaisons are Cliff Engle and Tony Drury. (*Asterisk indicates founding member)
The initial impetus which put the 10-member Task Force into motion was the loss of the residents’ only means to recycle - a dumpster provided through a Washington County program. The town government had been forced to discontinue hosting the bin because the remote site was being used as a dumping ground for much more than recyclables.
The group's first goal was to work with the town to reinstate the county's recycling bin program by finding a suitable location for the dumpster.
Recycling returned - On Dec. 22, 2007, some four months later, recycling was returned to Boonsboro, as the recycling dumpster began operations at its new site - in the Park-n-Ride at the intersection of Alt. Rt. 40 and Rt. 67 in the town’s south end. Two years later, in November 2009, a second dumpster was added by the county to help take care of the overflow at this very busy site.
A common site at the recycling area before the second dumpster was added. Recycling increased more than 40 percent in 2010, the first full year the site operated with two bins.
To help ensure that the site would not be overrun again with refuse, the members of the BRTF offered to regularly monitor the dumpster site. The group kept its promise and a member visited the site each day for more than two years, until February 2010, when the town government took over monitoring duties on weekdays, with the Task Force checking the site on weekends.
Recycling increases - In 2009, residents deposited in the recycling dumpsters an average of 18.5 tons of recyclables each month. During the same 12-month period, however, the town still sent more than 1,200 tons of household waste to the county landfill. That's equal to one full ton (2,000 pounds) of waste for every Boonsboro household being buried in the landfill during the year.
The recycling tonnage at the two dumpsters increased more than 40 percent in 2010, as the additional capacity encouraged more residents to use the facility on a regular basis. Unfortunately, the household waste going into the landfill did not decrease. Again, 1,200 tons of waste was transported by a private contractor to the county's landfill west of Hagerstown. In 2010, the county charged a $50 tipping fee for each ton deposited in the landfill by a municipality. (The fee was increased to $52 in 2011.)
Curbside needed - The Task Force's second goal from the start has been to bring curbside recycling to the residents of Boonsboro. An estimated 3,300 people reside in Boonsboro, Washington County's second largest municipality, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Of the nine municipalities in the county, five -- Hagerstown, Williamsport, Smithsburg, Clear Spring and Keedysville -- have once-a-week collection of trash and recyclables. Both Smithburg and Clear Spring added curbside pickup in July 2011, while Keedysville started the service in late January 2012. (Washington County provides no curbside recycling services anywhere in the county; households outside of the municipalities are serviced by private haulers only.)
Washington County provides drop-off recycling services at the 40-West Landfill, at transfer stations in Hancock, in Greensburg and in South County at two locations, one on Kaetzel Road and the other on Dargan School Road. In addition, the county finances the dumpster program at various locations throughout the county, including the site in Boonsboro.
The current and former Board of County Commissioners, have participated in several discussions regarding county-wide curbside recycling programs, but no action has been taken.
Survey - In late 2007, a door-to-door survey (Click here to view the survey) was conducted by Task Force members to determine who and how residents were recycling at the time and how many would be interested in the town’s starting a curbside recycling program. Of the nearly 500 households surveyed, more than 86 percent were in favor of adding curbside services. The town, however, has not as yet initiated a curbside program. The town's sanitation contract, however, will go out for bids this spring and hopes are high that curbside recycling will be added to the solid waste pickup schedule.
Other community programs
While the BRTF continues to push for more recycling services in the town and beyond, members have become involved in other educational and outreach programs to improve the community:
Green Fest - Planning began in early 2009 for the first annual Boonsboro Green Fest. The second Saturday in May - the day before Mother's Day - was selected and members began to work on attracting exhibitors, sponsors and food vendors, and on promoting the event throughout the region. The event was so successful, with 84 vendors and thousands of attendees, that the committee immediately vowed to make it an annual affair. The fourth annual Green Fest is set for May 12, 2012.
Education - Environmental Clubs were started at both Boonsboro High School (March 2008) and Middle School (September 2008). The Middle School club has grown to more than 30 members and has continued to be active in a variety of projects.
MAKE YOUR OWN - Janeen Solberg (right), immediate past chairperson of the Recycling Task Force, demonstrates to a church group in Boonsboro how to mix eco-friendly household cleaners. She is assisted by Task Force members Kathy Vesely (left) and Jenny Sarnecki. All three are founding members of the Task Force.
Green Cleaning - A demonstration on how to make eco-friendly cleaning products has been presented by BRTF Janeen Solberg to groups throughout the community. If your organization would like to learn how to help the environment and save money at the same time, send an email to the attention of Janeen.
Information - A recycling how-to information sheet (Click here to view the how-to sheet) was produced by the BRTF and distributed throughout the community and mailed with the residents’ town utility bills in 2008. A refrigerator magnet detailing what and where to recycle was also distributed to town residents.The Task Force has also made available a flyer listing a wide variety of recyclables being collected by various agencies, groups and individuals throughout the county. Many items are collected each year at the Green Fest's drive-thru, drop-off site.
Special events recycling - BRTF members collected recyclables during all of the major events held during 2008-2011 in the town's Shafer Park. Initially, the recycling containers were borrowed from a neighboring municipality for each event. The Task Force, however, felt that the town should have its own containers so they would be more accessible. The Mayor & Council agreed and the 15 new containers were debuted at the first annual Green Fest. (More containers and other equipment and supplies are being purchased by the Green Fest Committee for the town during 2012.)
The special event containers have been used to collect recyclable bottles and cans during all of the major events at the park, at the South Mountain Little League baseball fields on Monroe Road throughout the baseball season and at other special events. The Town buys the special collection bags and the Task Force members set up, monitor and collect the recyclables to be placed in the recycling dumpsters at the Park-n-Ride, next to Thompson Gas. Hundreds of extra-large, see-through bags have been filled with recyclables that otherwise would have ended up in the county landfill.
TREASURES IN 'THEM THAR' LOCKERS - Task Force members Rosemary James (left) and Kathy Vesely sort the contents of the Boonsboro High School lockers during one of the locker clean-outs Kathy initiated at the high school. Hundreds of notebooks, paper, pencils, books and a myriad of other reusable materials have been saved from being dumped in the county landfill. The recovered supplies are then made available to students at no cost. The founder of the school's Environmental Club, Kathy is also the chair of the Washington County Solid Waste Advisory Committee, which reports to the County Commissioners. A group of students, earning their Student Service Learning (SSL) hours, collects recyclables each week from the classrooms. Without this program, there would be no organized recycling program in the high school. The Board of Education has provided recycling bins at each school in the county, but it takes a committed person, such as Kathy, to carry out a successful program.
Report - To let the community know about its goals and accomplishments, the BRTF produced a report (Click here to view the report) of its first year’s activities and made a presentation to the Boonsboro Mayor & Council in September 2008.
Since the Task Force's inception, two members have won seats on the Boonsboro Town Council. As a result, the Mayor and Council receive regular updates regarding the activities of both committees.
LANDFILL TOUR - The Task Force sponsored an eye-opening tour of the Washington County 40 West Landfill in the fall of 2008. Other tours are being planned. County Recycling Coordinator Harvey Hoch (left) led the tour. Harvey retired from his "day job" in early 2010, but he has remained an active member of both the BRTF and the Green Fest Committee.
Members reach out to help community - Members of the Task Force are very busy with families, work, and other civic, school and religious activities. And the enthusiasm to treat Mother Earth kindly carries over into the community. One of many examples occurred when member Brigitte Schmidt initiated a soccer equipment and clothing swap (see photo below) during the start of the American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) season in September 2009. More than 30 players were outfitted with gently used cleats and 20 players received soccer balls, while several others received shinguards, socks and shorts. A sports equipment swap was added to the Green Fest in 2011.
SOCCER SWAP - The BRTF and the local youth soccer organization teamed up to sponsor a soccer equipment and clothing swap during two Saturdays in September 2009. Showing off some of the gently used items are (from left) Brigitte Schmidt, a BRTF founding member and originator of the swap, Keith Juedemann, regional commissioner for AYSO, and Paul Kadin, assistant regional commissioner.
Expand - An important goal of the Task Force is to continue expanding its membership so current programs can be enhanced and new earth-friendly programs and projects can be initiated.
Now you've seen what we've been up to. If these sorts of activities sound interesting, we would love to have you join the Task Force. Email us and help make our community a better place for everyone.
Our regular meetings are held on the third Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. at the Community Center in Boonsboro's Shafer Park and are open to the public. Please join us.
BRTF meeting topics varied - The Task Force has played host to a wide variety of resource people discussing many topics of interest to the community. Topics have included recycling, solar energy systems, safe food preparation for large gatherings, advantages of purchasing produce from a certified organic farm and how to reduce your carbon footprint. In addition, members and guests have viewed the movie "Trashed" (http://trashedmovie.com/trailer.html) during a special movie night.
CHOOSE CLEAN, GREEN POWER - Members and guests of the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, including Chair Janeen Solberg (right), heard an informative presentation in 2010 about how to use wind-generated electricity in their homes. Amanda Duzak (left) of Clean Currents explained why and how residents can choose green power over electricity generated by coal and nuclear plants. BRTF members Sean Haardt (center) and his wife Leslie (not pictured) were the first Boonsboro family to make the switch to Clean Currents, a clean energy company based in Rockville, Md. "Signing up was easy," says Sean. Go to www.cleancurrents.com for more information. Be sure to type in "Boonsboro" when asked how you heard about the program when filling out the application to switch to Clean Currents. There is no cost to switch to wind power. Maryland residents have had the opportunity to switch power providers since legislation was approved by the General Assembly a decade ago.
Sean Haardt (standing) oversees high school student volunteers preparing flower planting containers for youngsters in Kids Zone pavilion during 2011 Green Fest. Sean and his wife Leslie serve as chairs of the Kids Zone.
If you would like to help at this year's Green Fest, please complete our "Volunteer Form".
Deadline for submission is Wednesday, May 9, 2012.
Volunteer forms may be submitted by email through the form or printed and mailed to:
Attn: Kathy Vesely
Boonsboro Green Fest
P.O. Box 64
Boonsboro, MD 21713-0064
You may email forms to:
Green Fest Cups - Coming Soon!
Key: CC=Community Center & KZ=Kids Zone
9:45 am - Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. Guest Emcee Lou Scally, local TV weatherman & broadcaster - Band Stand
10:30 am - Puppet Show - KZ
10:30 am - Composting speaker & door prizes - CC
11:00 am - 1:30 pm - The Yardslippers band performs - Stage
11:00 am - Twister Field - for K-5 kids only - KZ
11:30 am - Recycling speaker & door prizes - CC
11:30 am - Puppet Show - KZ
12:00 pm - Bird House presentation - BES 2nd graders show how to make bird houses from recycled materials - KZ
12:30 pm - Puppet Show - KZ
12:30 pm - Awakening the Dreamer speaker & door prizes - CC
1:00 pm - Twister Field - for middle school kids only - KZ
1:30 pm - Puppet Show - KZ
2:00-5:00 pm - Ray Owen, one-man show - Stage
2:00 pm - Careers - speaker & door prizes - CC
2:00 pm - Fibonacci Numbers Roundtable - BES 3rd graders present “numbers in nature” discussion - KZ
2:30 pm - Puppet Show - KZ
3:00 pm - Twister Field - for high school kids only - KZ
3:30 pm - Stink Bugs speaker & door prizes - CC
Programs held in Pavilion #3
Twister Field - Games by age groups (see schedule below)
Mosaic - Help create art with only bottle caps
Flower Starter Project - Plant your own seed in flower pot
Pledge to the Earth - Make your pledge to Mother Earth.
Scavenger Hunt - Explore Green Fest and win prizes
Mother’s Day Card Making - Create a card for your mom
Create a Fish - Middle school students help youngsters make fish from recycled CD ROM’s.
Tony M. Music - Singer-songwriter will perform original music, periodically throughout the day. (CD’s available)
Puppet Shows - Boonsboro Middle School students present an educational and entertaining show five times, on the half-hour, from 10:30 am to 2:30 pm.
Programs held in the Community Center
Door prizes awarded following each presentation
Entertainment & stage underwriters: