ECOFest was initiated in 2008 with an overall goal of educating the public about environmentally sustainable actions. To support this goal, there are three major objectives:
- Engage families in fun/festival environment and encourage their commitment to small changes that can make a difference to the environment;
- Show that the Region is working to reduce impacts on the environment; and
- Provide a vision of sustainability and environmental initiatives for the future.
Our target is to increase the number of people that participate in the ECOFEST event every year. EcoFest is a collaborative effort involving several departments including Public Health; Transportation and Environmental Services; Planning, Housing and Community Services; and Corporate Resources.
2013 ECOFest – Reduce your footprint one step at a time
Over 1300 people from across the Region of Waterloo participated at the 6th annual ECOFest at the Region of Waterloo Museum. Grand River Transit offered a $6 Family Day Pass as well as direct shuttle service from Fairwview Park Mall so visitors were able to travel 'green' to and from the event.
Junkyard Symphony, an eco-entertainment company, entertained the crowds with energy and enthusiasm while encouraging the audience to reduce, reuse and recycle. Attractions also included Birds of Prey demonstration displaying the natural grace and beauty of birds as they soar through the air and on-site celebrity story teller Chief Top Leaf. Kid Zone featured fun, interactive and environmentally educational games and activities for children.
The Market Place of Ideas offered exhibits on a range of environmental topics including car sharing, solar & wind energy, energy efficiency, waste reduction, environmental friendly cleaning & personal care products, climate change, organic gardening & produce, environmental education and the popular Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory exhibit.
If you have not attended an ECOFest, plan to check it out next year!
2012 ECOFest – emPOWER yourself at home, work and play!
Over 1100 visitors from across Ontario came to enjoy activities offered at ECOFest 2012 on June 2nd!
This year, families enjoyed an exclusive opportunity to see Waterloo Region Museum (WRM) exhibits for free! For more details about the WRM, see their website on the following link: http://www.waterlooregionmuseum.com
As the first year to showcase electric vehicles, visitors young and old were revved up to emPOWER themselves with ways to live and play sustainably! The whole day was buzzing with excitement and lively conversations as visitors learned from our diverse local environmental exhibitors, activities, and entertainment.
When visitors returned home, they were all a little wiser having had learned how to give their unwanted electronics and cars a new life; to be aware of green-washing (false advertising of environmental benefits); feed their bodies with healthy foods; adapt habits to save energy and water; make their travels to school and work fun and sustainable; take their learning to a new level through camps and library programs; and much more!
However, being a good environmental citizen isn't always about receiving information – it also involves contributing ideas that will help shape a sustainable future. Visitors had the chance to have their say on two region-wide projects that will shape our community: the new Transit Corridor and Community Greenhouse Gas Action Plan projects!
2011 ECOFest – Reduce your footprint one step at a time!
ECOFest 2011 had an amazing turn out of exhibitors with fun and interactive activities filling the classrooms, foyer and fields of the Waterloo Region Museum, gateway to the Doon Heritage Village! Visitors were treated to special activities like face painting, archeological digs, solar-powered snow cones, adventures with live critters from a nearby stream, and even chances to "drive" our Region's giant snow plow! With a free GRT bus shuttle bringing visitors from Fairview Mall to the Museum, travel was easy and sustainable. Nearly 2000 visitors enjoyed ECOFest 2011 and enthusiastically made pledges on personal action to help reduce their own ecological footprint.
2010 ECOFest – A fun-filled day to celebrate the environment!
ECOFest 2010 spends its first year at the Waterloo Region Museum and Doon Heritage Village. ECOFest continues its legacy of stellar education with fun interactive learning unique to the Doon Heritage Village and the Groundwater Festival. Visitors were able to travel back in time at the historical site while playing fun games that teach them how to protect and enhance the environment for our future.
ECOFest 2009 was held at Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) in June with three components:
1. A showcase of EcoSchool initiatives and awards;
2. Opening ceremonies with keynote speakers & dignitaries; and
3. Workshops, presentations and entertainment geared towards the public. Workshop topics included composting, pesticide reduction, native plant gardening, home energy efficiency, local trail use, bicycle maintenance, eco-art, local food production and purchasing, and others.
In 2008 the Region of Waterloo Public Health partnered with the Children's Museum to co-present the Eco-Show on March 13 to 15, 2008.
The event allowed Region of Waterloo to showcase its environmental programs and services and the programs of its community partners at a centrally located venue to a large audience. Over 3,800 visitors attended the event over the three days in 2008.
Exhibits and displays from Regional programs include topics such as waste reduction, water protection, water conservation, transportation demand management, salt reduction, pesticide reduction, children's health and the environment, food choices and the environment, health and the built environment, the Energy Conservation Office, and the Joseph Schneider Haus.
Community partners in 2008 included - Children's Water Education Council; Community Garden Network of Waterloo Region; FoodLink; Goodwill; Grand River CarShare; Habitat for Humanity; Kitchener Master Gardeners; KW Field Naturalists; Laurel Creek Conservation Area; Residential Energy Efficiency Project; The Working Centre. Most of these will be returning, with new activities such as live music and entertainment from "Red Balloon", Eric Traplin and Captain Cam.
For more about EcoFest, click here.