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August eNews: Celebrate Local Green Progress; Biking Gets Better in Oak Park; Young Filmmakers Contest Begins

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GREEN LIVING

Book Review: "This Changes Everything"
 

By David Holmquist
Green Community Connections will host a discussion of this book at 7 p.m. Wednesday, August 12, at the Oak Park Public Library. This group is already at capacity, but if you are interested in being on the waiting list or attending another book discussion for this book, please RSVP here

It has been nearly a year since the publication of Naomi Klein’s best-selling book “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate”. It was released on September 16, 2014, just five days before the People’s Climate March in New York City, at which a gathering of 400,000 people demonstrated their frustration over the lack of action on climate change mitigation. The backdrop was a climate summit called by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for September 23, at which the heads of state or government from over 100 countries were to convene in New York to discuss proposed commitments to emissions reductions and to climate finance through the UN Green Climate Fund. These were to form the basis of an “ambitious and universal climate agreement” to be finalized at the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris in December of 2015. 

Continue reading for more analysis.

WALKING THE TALK
Join the Conversation
at ProAction Cafe #3

 

Come out and celebrate local green accomplishments of 2015 at the Green ProAction Café #3. It will take place from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, August 27, at the beautifully renovated Thatcher Pavilion at Thatcher Woods Forest Preserve, 8030 Chicago Ave., in River Forest. We’ll hear about progress with pesticide-free lawn care, wildlife corridor expansion, availability of local food, the shared economy, environmental political action, and more. We'll share what's new and what's next, and have time to hear about your projects and ideas. Join us for food, music, and laughter as we celebrate together as a community. RSVP here.

Green ProAction Café #3 is the final in a series of three gatherings intended to grow the number and diversity of residents that are engaged in dialogue and action focused on building a healthy and resilient community. It’s an opportunity to meet new people, learn about creative initiatives and contribute ideas. Please come and bring a friend. Make sure your block, school, and congregation are represented. It is not necessary to have participated in ProAction Café #1 or #2. All are welcome.

Read more details about this event.

CONNECT TO ACTION
Biking Gets Better in Oak Park

 

By Ron Burke, Executive Director of Active Transportation Alliance

As a 20-year resident of Oak Park, I’m excited to share a number of changes coming to Oak Park that will improve conditions for biking and walking.

A few weeks ago, the village board approved the Oak Park Neighborhood Greenways system as an addendum to its 2008 bike plan. Elements of the 2008 bike plan have already been adopted, such as significantly more and better bike parking near transit stations, bike lanes, wayfinding signs and creating a village government bike fleet.

Despite these improvements, many people tell me they are afraid to ride in Oak Park when they have to deal with high traffic and high-speed streets, even if those streets are marked with a typical bike lane.

We know from surveys that most people feel this way, and that is the inspiration for Oak Park’s Neighborhood Greenways, which will be a network of bike and walk priority streets that exists solely on side streets where the average person is more comfortable biking and walking.

Learn about additional improvements here.

Spread the Word!

Calling all Young, Creative Environmentalists


Entering (and possibly winning!) the Young Filmmakers Contest can bring many benefits: cash prizes between $75 and $500, a shining star on resumes or college applications, and a world-premiere screening at the One Earth Film Festival in March 2016.

The challenge is to create a well-researched three to eight-minute film or a short ,45-second animation on one of six specific issues related to climate change and sustainability (water, waste, food, transportation, energy, open space and ecosystems).

Spread the word to your friends, family, neighbors, and classrooms. Details and rules available HERE.
As creator of the One Earth Film Festival, Green Community Connections believes in the power of film to inform, inspire and transform. Our Keeping It Reel feature curates short videos and feature-length film trailers that focus on a variety of sustainability and environmental issues that affect us all.  

Here is this month's selection:

Author of "Zero Waste Home," Bea Johnson takes us inside her abode. She is a leading spokesperson for the global movement to live simply.
 

 

Upcoming Community and Regional Events


Tuesday, August 116:30 to 8 p.m.Mosquito Control: Right Sizing Community Expectationsat the River Forest Public Library, 735 Lathrop Ave., in River Forest. Midwest Pesticide Action Center will discuss how chemicals used in mosquito fogging are detrimental to ecological and human health. Register here.


Wednesday, August 12, 7 to 9 p.m.Naomi Klein's "This Changes Everything" Book Discussion, at the Oak Park Public Library Main Branch, 834 Lake St., in Oak Park. Green Community Connections hosts this lively conversation. This group is full, but RSVP for wait list or another discussion.

Friday, August 14 to Sunday, August 16, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sugar Beet Food Co-op Grand Opening, at 812 Madison St. , in Oak Park. Ribbon cutting, raffles, tastings, and visiting chefs. More details here.

Saturday, August 15, 10 to 11 a.m., Dog Days of Summer Hike, beginning at Trailside Museum, 738 Thatcher Ave., in River Forest. Bring your friendly, leashed dog, or just yourself, on a guided hike through the shady woods. This is a family program. Register at least two days in advance by calling 708-366-6530. More here.



Sunday, August 16, 2 to 3 p.m., 
What's the Buzz? (Beekeeping)at Trailside Museum, 738 Thatcher Ave., in River Forest. Learn about the Forest Preserve's partnership with Sweet Beginnings honey and enjoy a presentation about beekeeping. Call to register at least two days in advance at 708-366-6530. More here.

Sunday, August 16, 2015 Wright Ride (Bicycle Ride), starts at Marion St. and North Blvd. in Oak Park. The 30, 50 and 68-mile options are open from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. A 10-mile historical tour route opens at 7 a.m. and goes until 10:30 a.m. Frank Lloyd Wright docents will be on this course. Hosted by Oak Park Cycle Club, Visit Oak Park, and the Oak Park Regional Housing Center. More here.

Tuesday, August 18, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.Mosquito Control: Right Sizing Community Expectationsat the Oak Park Public Library, 2nd Floor Meeting Room, 834 Lake St., in Oak Park. Midwest Pesticide Action Center will discuss how chemicals used in mosquito fogging are detrimental to ecological and human health. Register here.



Saturday, 
August 22, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Hazzard Free Farm Tour and Brunch in Pecatonica, Ill. Tour the main farm and small grains nursery, hand harvest heirloom grains, and enjoy farm-to-table brunch. Sponsored by Sugar Beet Food Co-op with graduated prices based on age.  Register here.


Sunday, August 23, 2 to 3 p.m., What's the Buzz? (Beekeeping)at Trailside Museum, 738 Thatcher Ave., in River Forest. Learn about the Forest Preserve's partnership with Sweet Beginnings honey and enjoy a presentation about beekeeping. Call to register at least two days in advance at 708-366-6530. More here.

Thursday, August 27, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Green ProAction Cafe 3: From Ideas to Action to Celebration meets at Thatcher Pavilion, 8030 Chicago Ave., in River Forest. This event will be a celebration of accomplishments in 2015. RSVP here. Contact sally@greencommunity connections.org for more information or call 773-315-1109.

Friday, August 28, 6 to 8 p.m.The Oak Park Conservatory Uncorked, at the Oak Park Conservatory, 615 Garfield, in Oak Park. See local artists, listen to musicians, and take a tour of the Fern, Tropical and Desert rooms. Admission includes two drinks and food for $15. Adults only, register here.

Saturday, August 29, 2 to 3 p.m., What's the Buzz? (Beekeeping)at Trailside Museum, 738 Thatcher Ave., in River Forest. Learn about the Forest Preserve's partnership with Sweet Beginnings honey and enjoy a presentation about beekeeping. Call to register at least two days in advance at 708-366-6530. More here.



Sunday, September 13, 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., Mushrooms of the Chicago Region with mycologist Dr. Patrick Leacock of the Field Museum of Natural History. Takes place at The Priory, Room 259, Dominican University, 7200 W. Division, in River Forest. Sponsored by West Cook Wild Ones.

Friday and Saturday, September 25 and 26The League of Women Voters Annual Meeting and Conference, at the Wyndham Suites, 1400 Milwaukee Ave., in Glenview. Speakers include Dr. Abigail Derby Lewis, conservation ecologist at the Field Museum of Natural History and Molly Flanagan, policy director at Alliance for the Great Lakes. Register by August 26 for reduced hotel rates. Details here.

Friday, September 25, 6 to 8 p.m.The Oak Park Conservatory Uncorked, at the Oak Park Conservatory, 615 Garfield, in Oak Park. See local artists, listen to musicians, and take a tour of the Fern, Tropical and Desert rooms. Admission includes two drinks and food for $15. Adults only, register here.

Saturday, September 26, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Montalbano Farms Tour in Sandwich, Ill. Tour this working farm and purchase fresh produce for home. Sponsored by Sugar Beet Food Co-op.  Cost is $12 per member and $15 per non-member. Children ages 17 and under are free. Bring a lunch or order one from Sugar Beet. Register here.

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