Monday, May 5, 2008

At the Go Green Expo in New York the Power is Yours

The Freen and I attended the Go Green Expo in New York a couple weeks ago. As I was driving into the city (yes I see the irony) I decided to bring him along. Unsure I reminded myself that the whole point of my new pursuit is to achieve a better flow between my professional and family life. So there I was after 12 years in the events business, dragging my son along to a consumer expo designed for greenies to peruse the latest and greatest in eco-friendly products.

He was thrilled just to be entering the hotel. “Mommy is this a conference?...Mommy is this your work?” he gushed as he explored the hotel lobby. Excited by his excitement alone, I checked the stroller and boarded the escalator with a diverse mix of young urbanites, crunchy granolas and tourists.

It was very crowded and split between three levels…gotta love New York City venues. Somehow we managed to make our way through the throngs of people, me carrying the Freen for most of the day (yes my back still hurts), but we found some great products and people.

The first stand out booth was the Ella Vickers Recycled Sailcloth Collection. They offer handcrafted bags made of tough, recycled sailcloth from Americas Cup boats, Maxi yachts, high performance racing boats and cruising yachts. I saw a few people carrying them around so they seemed to be selling well despite being a little pricey.
Right next to her was Seltzer who carries stylish, unique and eco-friendly stationary, wrapping paper and notebooks. But more importantly they were giving free buttons to children. Freen picked the cupcake button...this would become a theme as the day developed.

Another company offering gifters eco-friendly wrapping options was Lagniappe Gift Wrap. They have a collection reusable fabric bags for wrapping which would be great for all those kids birthday parties we have coming up.

My favorite eco-friendly tote bag and definitely a top contender for the most social responsibility company was Global Goods Partners. GGP provides their partners which include global organizations with a commitment to community development direct access to new markets in the United States, increasing both their revenue and global awareness of their work. GGP uses proceeds from product sales to provide technical assistance and grant support to its partners, assisting them in building stronger, more effective programs.

On the organic clothes front there were two standouts for babies. The first was Kee-Ka, who offer eco-chic apparel and gifts made from organic cotton. They have a new line of socks that are simply precious and the sweat pea and cup cake designs are just too cute.
Obli Organics was the other clothing company with unique and stylish organic duds for babies. Obli stands for On borrowed Land, Inc which I think is very cool.
The adult clothes for the most part were either too hemp or too yoga for my taste but Tara Lynn Studio reuses clothes to make her beautiful designs and even has a line of eco-friendly wedding gowns.

Freen was good to point out some cool t-shirts for daddy at Partybots.

We were holding up quite well and even found a few booths with organic chocolate samples and then Freen saw someone with a cup cake. So we had to go the wrong way up one aisle to find the Change the World Together booth. The cup cakes were free and they were giving away Mrs. Myers laundry detergent and Whole Foods grocery bags with the purchase of a t-shirt. So on that day, Freen became The Cutest Person to Change the World and one happy cup cake eating kid. The cup cake however did not appear to be organic.
Nice and wired on the cup cake, we spent some time watching them demo natural cleaning products at the Shaklee booth where the Freen just about knocked over the entire display and really put the power of their cleaners to the test.

Although we were tired by the time we got there, the third floor was where all the fun stuff was. One highlight was the vegetable powered hummer from Massa Green Enterprises. They specialize in SVO/Vegetable Oil Conversion for diesel vehicles…read vegetable powered hummers.

Moving beyond the three Rs to the three Es, Educate, Entertain, Empower the last two booths left a lasting impression. The first because we’ve read it every night for two weeks, Think Green from Kids Think Big. It is a great book, with fun illustrations and Freen has already started practicing some of the green ideas. We were even lucky enough to get our copy signed by the author Jeanine Behr Getz.
But nothing could really compare to becoming an Official Planeteer, meeting Captain Planet and David Coburn the voice of Captain Planet who gave a great kid’s version of the Inconvenient Truth.

The Freen was fully educated, entertained and empowered and to prove it he keeps shutting off lights and refusing to brush his teeth to save water but most of all he really likes yelling The Power is Yours while he stands on his potty. So all in all it was a success. I met some great people, found some very cool products and spent some qt with the Freen.


Anonymous said...

I went to the show too. It is funny that you commented on some of my favorite vendors too.

It is great your son went with you. My kids would rather die then come to a green event with their mom. I am hoping I am planting the seeds for later in life when they have those "ah" moments and realized mom taught them those eco-lessons. Anna

Anonymous said...

Good words.