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CONTEST: Last Week to Win PNE Family Passes!

Read other entrants' ideas for greening the Pacific National Exhibition, and add your own.

Michelle Hoar 5 Aug 2013TheTyee.ca

Michelle is the Director of Publishing and Advertising for The Tyee, overseeing business development, advertising, sponsorships and working with the rest of the fabulously talented team on strategic initiatives and ongoing site improvements. With The Tyee since its beginnings in 2003, Michelle has dabbled in almost every aspect of the business, other than editorial.

Previous to The Tyee, she worked for a number of environmental and social justice non-profits in a communications capacity. Her chief interests are online media and community-building, partnership development, and social change movements.

When not at The Tyee, Michelle is busy being the mother of two young daughters, digging in the dirt, or sleeping. One day she hopes to engage in other leisure activities she used to have time for too.

Last week we launched a Vancity-sponsored contest for three PNE "family packs of passes," worth $275 a piece (it's open until Aug. 11th, so enter now!) Vancity celebrates its member day at The Fair at the PNE on Aug. 29th, and is putting on the contest to highlight its multi-year strategic partnership with the PNE in support of its sustainability initiatives. (A related Tyee article by David P. Ball goes into detail about the 103-year-old institution's significant efforts here.)

As part of the contest entry, readers have the option to offer their ideas for greening the PNE. Vancity will be compiling all ideas to inform their partnership with the PNE, and The Tyee is publishing some of the best suggestions on the results page for the contest.

We've had over 120 ideas submitted in the first week, with some very clear, repeatedly highlighted themes.

The most oft-repeated ideas by far have to do with the food and beverage vendors. Tyee readers want to see lots of recycling bins, composting bins, and an eradication of Styrofoam and plastic food containers, switching instead to compostable and reusable options.

There were also many mentions of providing more water fountains and encouraging people to bring their own water bottles.

Other common suggestions included integrating solar power, more green space and shade, and experimenting with human-powered rides and exhibitor lighting.

According to Michael Woodman, the PNE's manager of sustainability development, many readers' suggestions are already being implemented. (Read this article for our original interview with Woodman detailing the PNE's greening successes so far.)

For example, all vendors have been requested to eliminate Styrofoam and phase in biodegradable food packaging. The PNE's 2013 sustainability requirements for vendors and concessionaires can be found here. Woodman encourages PNE-goers to tell a vendor who isn't complying about their desire for greener alternatives.

Maureen Cureton, Vancity's green business manager, cites composting as a significant plank of the PNE's waste reduction efforts. During the Fair at the PNE (Aug. 17 – Sept. 2), she's hoping people will visit the on-site Green Good composter in Vancity's Eco Alley, managed by Recycling Alternative, which they will be feeding stale mini doughnuts and other food scraps -- so bring your own! During the remainder of the year, the PNE has a composting program that goes off-site.

Cureton also encourages visitors to take advantage of the free bike valet service during The Fair, and to bring their own water bottles to fill up at water fountains around the fairgrounds. On Aug. 29th -- Vancity member day -- Metro Vancouver will be hosting a special watering station in Eco Alley.

Now for some highlights of Tyee readers' ideas for greening the PNE. (Want to add yours and enter for one of three $275 PNE family packs of passes? Enter before Aug. 11 here.)

Getting to the PNE

Recycling/composting/packaging etc.

Incentives for doing the 'right thing'

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