EcoFest Encinitas coming this weekend

ENCINITAS — The longest-running environmental fair in North County is gearing up for its annual one-day event celebrating eco-friendly businesses and sustainable practices in a family-friendly atmosphere.

The 12th annual EcoFest Encinitas, founded by local environmental activist Bob Nanninga, will kick off from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sept. 26 at Cottonwood Creek Park in Encinitas.

“Our mission is to inspire and educate attendees to live an eco-friendlier lifestyle and save money while helping the planet,” said John Gjata, president of EcoFest.

The festival’s activities will include recycled art, poetry, music and projects from local school districts. EcoFest Encinitas will also feature live music, local food and a libations lounge.

Local artist Janis Selby Jones' work addresses the impact of plastics on the environment. Courtesy photo
Local artist Janis Selby Jones’ work addresses the impact of plastics on the environment. Courtesy photo

The free event expects to attract approximately 1500 attendees and host about 50 exhibitors and vendors, including local businesses, government agencies, and environmental agencies, including the local Rotary and EcoRotary clubs, Sierra Club, Encinitas 101 Mainstreet Association, San Diego libraries and others.

Following the recent rise of electric bikes in North County, EcoFest Encinitas will have e-bikes on display and available for test rides, complete with valet service. A variety of electric cars will also be on display.

Sponsored by San Diego Community Power, EDCO Waste and Recycling Services, San Diego Gas & Electric, and Leichtag Foundation, EcoFest Encinitas is dedicated to providing the City of Encinitas with updates on practical solutions and ways to improve eco-sustainability.

The event is “zero waste,” so organizers recommend guests bring a reusable water bottle for unlimited purified water and encourage everyone to ride a bike or park their car at the bus station or civic center and walk to the park.

“EcoFest is a day of creative climate action for the whole family with environmental solutions and alternatives for the community to thrive,” said Lia Strell, EcoFest volunteer.

There are a number of exhibitors who will be speaking and sharing important tips and information about a range of environmental topics.

The Balloon Council, an organization that educates consumers and regulators about balloons, and Surfrider Foundation will share smart balloon practices and discuss alternatives to balloons.

“We need to eliminate balloon pollution to protect the health of our environment,” said Mark O’Connor, a Surfrider member.

Janis Selby Jones, an Oceanside teacher, environmentalist and artist, will also talk about plastic debris and create an interactive environmental art statement.

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