This weekend Seattle is hosting Green Festival 2008 at the Washington State Convention Center. According to the Seattle-PI, at least 20,000 and up to 30,000 people will attend this event this weekend. I took my family to the event on Saturday . The weather outside was about 80 degrees and it was probably the best weather we’ve had in Seattle for all of 2008, yet, inside the place was packed. It felt like there were more people inside than at the Seattle Home Show.
Inside there were more than 300 exhibits. Companies were displaying everything from clothes, body care products, organic beer and wine, fair trade coffee/tea/chocolate, kitchen tiles made from renewable resources, fun activities for kids (my four year old had a great time), ways to reduce your energy consumption, samples of food, and even live music.
Some notable samples that I tried: Dancing Goats Blend coffee. I tasted this black and it had a nice sweet, dark, smooth flavor without any bitter taste. Dancing Goats coffee is certified organic and fair trade certified. Dancing Goats is from Batdorf & Bronson Coffe Roasters which is located in Olympia, WA. I also tried a sample of Mango Ceylon Tea from Choice Organic Teas. I’m not much of tea drinker, but the taste of this tea was very pleasant. I even bought a box to take home. It tastes great both hot or cold with ice. Choice Organic Teas is created and packaged by Granum, Inc located in Seattle. I have never tried fairtrade chocolate before, but, it certainly does taste good. Theo Chocolate had samples and it was possibly the best chocolate that I’ve had a in long time. Theo Chocolate operates their business in Seattle.
I found it interesting to see how much marketing collateral there was. Each exhibit had paper brochures, flyers, trinkets, magazines, etc. I kept looking on the back of each piece of paper looking for something that said “100% post consumer recycled paper” but I didn’t see much of that. Perhaps that is something that goes without saying since this is the “Green Festival”. The one funny thing that I saw was a booth from a Printing company that flew out here from Pittsburgh. They were telling me that I could print out my marketing materials, business cards by sending them a file to their FTP server and then they would print out it out on recycled paper and mail it back to me. In my opinion, it would seem to make more sense to use a local print shop than to have it mailed halfway across the country. The fuel for transporting the green printed materials seems to negate any benefits of actually printing it on recycled paper. I was also happy to see compost, paper, bottles, plastic recycling containers throughout the exhibition center.
The impression that I came away with was that I know Seattle is a green city, but after attending this event, there are significantly more people than I thought that are truly living a green lifestyle. People of all ages are looking for ways to contribute to preserve our environment. I was truly inspired after attending this event.