Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Week of Green

In case you missed it, last Saturday's Live Green in Plano Expo was a tremendous success. Kudos to all the organizers, especially Heather Merchant, who invested innumerable, exhaustive hours in the planning and execution of this event. I was bowled over by the availability of green technologies, from solar panels to rainwater catchment systems to my new favorite business, Nature Maids (www.nature-maids.com), a 'green cleaning service.' Heard Museum and Discovery Gardens were there, as were Master Gardeners and Native Plant Society of Collin County. Around our booth, there was a party going on. Scores of people -- some former clients, some brand-spanking-new folks, some old friends we've lost touch with -- dropped by to say 'hello' and encouraged us to keep on, keeping on. We had a terrific time meeting with a slew of new folks. Thanks to all of you for stopping by!

Sunday we went to the dog park. Folsom desperately needed an outlet for energy accumulated while we were at the Expo.

Tonight (Tuesday the 8th) we attended City of Plano's Environmental Community Awards (I was the keynote speaker at last year's event.) We carpooled with our buddy Michele Dave. Although we missed the dinner portion of the banquet, we arrived in time to see all of the award presentations. I always enjoy watching PISD students being recognized for their contribution to Tshirt contests, environmental club activities, or their neighborhood's residential recycling program. Their delighted faces when they receive an award or certificate warm my heart. Keep it up, kiddos; you are the future of our planet. We are depending on YOU to heal our planet's environmental wounds.

We created landscape designs for two of the three nominees for the Keep Plano Beautiful Campus Beautification Award. Shepard Elementary took home the trophy -- way to go Patriots! Their Becky's Memorial Garden, herb garden and Patriot Garden are worth a visit. Students and student/buddy teams installed all of the plants, along with guidance from parents and staff. They truly deserve this award.

Plano Senior High and Hickey Elementary's Environmental Clubs received the Outstanding Environmental Club Awards. I'm impressed by what the high school students and their sponsor have organized, but I'm personally proud of my old friend, Jennifer Barnaby, Environmental Coordinator for Hickey Elementary. Good going, Golden Girl!

The awards continued...we were presented with the 2007 Environmental Community Partnership Award. WOW! This is a great honor for us, and the award itself is LOVELY. (Congratulations to Deb Bliss for its design!) It was our pleasure to be included in the list of nominees, along with Elliot's Hardware and REI. Congratulations to the other nominees for their efforts to combine environmentalism with volunteerism to benefit our community.

Michele was recognized for Environmental Community Outreach for the environmental initiatives she has facilitated with Kids Saving the Earth at Daffron Elementary. Her student members, as well as her own children, understand their impact on the planet on a much deeper level than most adults I know. And that's a good thing, since they will be in charge of cleaning up our oopsies. Overall, I'm encouraged by the dedication these students have to doing what's right for the planet.

Let's all give a round of applause to all the award recipients! In addition to our committed city employees, we are fortunate to have an army of devoted volunteers who do whatever it takes to make this a better place for all of us. Thank you, especially to the volunteers who work behind the scenes and seldom garner recognition.

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