In previous years, Earth Day ranked as one of those oft-forgotten minor holidays, relegated to a compost heap of lowly status and generating only marginal interest. Now, with increased public awareness of global environmental threats and the knowledge that we all need to play a part in saving our planet for the future, Earth Day has taken on a new role with greater significance. This year, with even the First Lady getting into the act by planting an organic garden on the White House lawn, we can all show off our greener lifestyles with festive, eco-friendly entertaining – on Earth Day and throughout the year.
Entertaining in Earth-friendly style. To plan your Earth Day celebration, start by choosing an earth-friendly theme – such as a garden-style party, a woodlands fête, or a seaside soiree. Plan to celebrate your event outdoors to capture the full spirit and intent of Earth Day, enjoying the scenery and ambiance of your natural setting. Next, select a color scheme that incorporates earthy shades of green and brown, punctuated by the bright colors of early spring. Choose linens made of natural fibers, avoiding plastic or disposable items that will be discarded after the event. The same goes for glasses, silverware and dishes – find vintage items at the flea market or thrift store that can be used again and again. Make your own centerpieces and decorations using locally grown, sustainable materials, including a wreath made out of vegetables, an herbal topiary tree, or green bouquets set in natural containers of leaves, moss and twigs.
Arrange flowers naturally – in water as opposed to petroleum-based foam – and try to use vines and twigs to bind materials together rather than wire or tape. Add vine-wrapped beeswax candles to your table for a natural ambiance. Finally, scour the Farmers’ Markets for fresh, local produce, herbs and flowers and incorporate these elements in both your décor and menu. A bonus: Green entertaining is not only chic and modern, it’s easy on the budget, too!
Each year on April 22, Earth Day compels us to focus on the beauty of nature and our role in protecting it, bringing the principles of green living to life. These concepts, including reducing consumption, recycling, and re-using and re-purposing everyday items, are important guidelines for leading a more eco-friendly lifestyle, and confirm the fact that environmentalism is a compilation of smart choices we make each day. On Earth Day we have an ideal opportunity to share our environmental commitment with friends and family and to promote the message that we can all make a contribution, conserving precious natural resources and forming vital partnerships to ensure the health and well-being of people and the places in which they live.