Navy Pier Sets the Stage for the Weekend-long Celebration of Eco and Social-Minded Lifestyles; Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. to Deliver Keynote Address at Show which Features 350 Exhibitors, Ford Ride-and-Drives of New Hybrid, an Eco-Fashion Show and Dozens of Speakers
Chicago, IL (March 26, 2012) – The sixth annual Green Festival sails into Navy Pier May 5 and 6, 2012, with social and environmental justice on the agenda. Keynote speaker Rev. Jesse L. Jackson will address the crowd on Saturday, May 5, after an introduction by Dr. Benjamin Chavis. At Green Festival, Reverend Jackson’s his impassioned voice will help raise awareness for key social causes integral to the Chicagoland community. Leaders in green lifestyle will also speak, including tween idol, Reed Alexander of iCarly, who will share his newly-launched healthy lifestyle website, KewlBites.com, a family-oriented site where parents and kids can learn how to eat more healthfully.
Leading environmental, healthy lifestyle and social justice advocates join the speaker line-up include Van Jones, who will launch his new book, Rebuild the Dream, a part memoir, part manifesto, which offers a powerful plan to renew the American Dream and critique of the Obama era. Additional speakers include, Laura Flanders, GRITtv; Amy Goodman, Democracy Now!; Jeffrey Smith; William Ayers; Bernadine Dohrn; Greg Palast and local leaders, including Naomi Davis of Blacks in Green; Bianca Alexander of Conscious Living TV and Karyn Calabrese.
“In our sixth year in Chicago, we are bringing together the biggest, brightest and strongest advocates for green lifestyles as well as environmental and social justice to create the most exciting Green Festival to date,” said Denise Hamler, Green Festival Director. “We are one big party with a purpose and this year, the purpose is to continue to raise awareness for making positive changes in our communities and our daily lives, from the food we eat to the technology we buy and the politics we support. We are delighted to celebrate solutions that work on the community level as well as provide platforms for enacting national and global solutions for making the world a more sustainable place.”
The weekend-long Green Festival event is expected to draw more than 30,000 people whose passion for green living and enthusiasm for learning new sustainability tools are matched by the exhibitors’ commitment to environmental sustainability, green living and social justice using Green America’s green business standards. Green Festival Chicago exhibitors bring the best, newest, most eco-friendly family products on the market from food to toys to clothing. The Good Food Stage invites participants to view cooking demos by leading local chefs and attendees can enjoy a snack from many of the vegan and vegetarian local food vendors then imbibe at the organic beer, mead and wine pavilion. The younger set can visit the dedicated kids’ area for learning about easy and fun ways to incorporate green at a young age, including arts and crafts using repurposed materials.
A joint project of Green America and Global Exchange, Green Festival is a non-profit event that celebrates an eleven-year milestone with over one million attendees in eight cities. Green Festival is the only national sustainability event that screens exhibitors for their commitment to social justice, sustainability and ecological balance using co-producer, Green America’s, green business standards. In the center of Green Festival is a unique marketplace of 350 eco-friendly businesses, featuring the latest and greatest in sustainable products and services. FORD Motor and Green Festivals have partnered again to fund a $5,000 Community Green Grant at the Chicago Green Festival. Attendees will be able to vote for their favorite project at the FORD Community Green Grants Booth during show hours.
Additional highlights include:
- Ford Ride and Drive opportunities
- Do-It-Yourself Workshops
- Green Kid’s Zone
- Green Business Pavilion
- Green Jobs and Careers
- Green Investing
- Renewable Energy
- Beer, Mead and Wine Pavilion
- Organic Local Food
- Fair Trade Pavilion
- Community Action Pavilion
- Green Films
- Youth Programs
- Roving acoustic musicians
- Bike Valet
- Eco-Fashion Show produced by Bianca Alexander & Michael Alexander of Conscious Living TV
- Keynote speakers include: Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr., Van Jones, Reed Alexander, Laura Flanders, Naomi Davis, Bianca Alexander, Karyn Calabrese, Jeffrey Smith, Amy Goodman, William Ayers, Bernadine Dohrn and Greg Palast
The 2012 Green Festival will return to downtown Chicago’s Navy Pier, Hall A. Doors open Saturday, May 5, 2012 from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, May 6, 2012 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Tickets are $15- 25 when purchased at the event door, discounts are given when purchased online in advance and there is reduced admission for seniors. Free admission for those who ride a bike to the event and park with the bike valet, as well as youth under eighteen and union members with valid identification, Green America and Global Exchange members, Sierra Club members with membership card and volunteers. For volunteer opportunities, visit greenfestivals.org/volunteer.
Key partners and sponsors include: Ford, Clif Bar, Earth Balance, Nature’s Path,Calvert,ManitobaHarvest, The New York Times Media, SustainU, Democracy Now and Repax.
For more information at Green Festival, please visit www.GreenFestivals.org. To exhibit: 828-333-9403 x 300. Apply to speak: www.greenfestivals.org/apply-to-speak. For partnerships: www.greenfestivals.org/become-a-partner
About Green America
Green America is a national nonprofit organization founded in 1982, providing the economic strategies, organizing power and practicing tools for businesses and individuals to address today’s social and environmental problems. Its Green Business Network is the largest national network of businesses screened for their social and environmental responsibility.
About Global Exchange
Global Exchange is a membership-based international human rights organization dedicated to promoting social, economic and environmental justice around the world. Since its founding in 1988, Global Exchange has successfully increased public awareness of root causes of injustice while building international partnerships and mobilizing for change.