Friday, July 8, 2011

Greening of the Oakland County Fair July 12th-17th

Summer's has officially arrived by all accounts.  The July 4th fireworks are still going on in some communities and believe it or not.... dare I say.... the days are getting incrementally shorter from here on out.   This year's annual celebration of freedom was especially beautiful with a back drop like non other provided by mother nature.  With the sun still glowing in the north western sky and a series of clouds radiating out from a central point like the spokes in a wheel... the stage was set for the fireworks to begin.
Oakland County 4-H Fair Association Mission Statement
The Oakland County 4-H Fair Association Mission is to provide a public educational showcase of our youth through hands-on experience with exhibits, demonstrations, and presentations as young people develop life skills in a family atmosphere.
All that being said.... the stage is set for the next big event of summer.... The Oakland County Fair.  For those of you who have attended the fair annually or are considering a visit for the first time there is plenty to do for everyone.   The fair has been well known for its agricultural history and will stay true to its roots.   You can expect the traditional Miracle of Birth Barn, 4-H events, Racing Pigs, Show Me Petting Zoo, Frog Jumping Contest, Demolition Derby and Monster Trucks events.  You will see show-case animals on display at the small animal auction. Let's not forget the Play-world Carnival and nightly events in the arena starting at 7 pm.   Many of these are free events while others are chargeable events.  The Carnival has special pricing for opening night with a reduced $17 fee and open from 1 to 11 pm.  All other days are priced at $20 with hours of 1 to 11 pm.   Did I mention the Circus?  There are 3 show's daily so plan to see the show.   

So what is new at the fair this year?  The Oakland County Fair is going Green!  Not that the fair isn't already green in the agricultural sense of greenness.   Earlier this month I met with L.C. Scramlin, the General Manager of the Oakland County Fair, and talked about some steps that could be taken in the the greening of the fair.    L.C. indicated that there has been a desire to take some small steps toward greening up the fair and took the bull by the horns (so to speak) this year.  The first small... yet significant shift you will notice is the change over to eco-friendly coffee cups.  L.C. indicated "There so many things we can change over we want to start with every cup of coffee we serve in an eco-friendly cup will be a good start".   With well over 80,000 plus guest expected during the week that could stack up to a lot of coffee cups.  

You will notice the world art on each cup indicating the message of thinking globally here in Oakland County when it comes to use of resources and the effect on the world.  Small... yet significant.  The cup is a biodegradable cup that will break down naturally.  The traditional polystyrene cups are not biodegradable and will be here long after their one and done use.  The lids are made of recyclable plastic and can be re purposed with the right collection processes. 

The next shift is the big shift that should turn some heads this year.  When you can make a shift to a major process of the maintaining of the operation using an agricultural based product... that is a true "Win-Win" proposition.   Enter the Soy Bean!  L.C. indicated to me that the fair had applied for a grant through the American Soy Bean Association .   However,  as luck would have it a grant came through from the local Michigan Soy Bean Association .
The grant funds were used to supply the fair with a variety of unique cleaning supplies that are required to operate AND clean for a crowd of 80,000 plus.   Let's take a look at a list of some of the cleaning supplies you can make from a soy base.  Here is a short list:  Glass cleaner, clinging toilet bowl cleaner, BBQ grill cleaner, all purpose cleaner, heavy duty hand cleaner, drain and septic cleaner, dry erase board cleaner, driveway sidewalk and patio cleaner, kitchen cleaner and degreaser, and my favorite... go ahead and say it with me.... Stinky Pee Eater.  How would you like that job?   This is just a short list of items we discussed and many will be on hand next week to do the job they are intended to do.  All of these soy based products are available (currently being loaded) at for use in your home or business.  A portion of the proceeds for any soy based product purchased at during the month of July and August will go toward the Oakland County Fair.  

Fun to use AND say....