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2014 Go Green! Greenpoint Wrap-up

The weather couldn’t have been better for this year’s Go Green Greenpoint! Festival. It was a day filled with music, dance, learning, fun, and sun. Some of the highlights of 2014 Go Green were a beautiful artisan market curated by Two Fair Ladies, a Greencycle Swap managed by Boy Scouts Brooklyn Troop 26, a chess tournament led by Chess NYC, health and wellness demonstrations by Hosh Yoga, and amazing music throughout the day provided by Close Encounters.

This was the premiere year for the Go Green Sustainability Challenge sponsored by ExxonMobil. Local schools were invited to use imagination, artistry, and scientific knowledge to create exhibits of art and science, representing this year’s theme, "Greening our Urban Environment." A total of 9 schools competed: 5 elementary schools, 3 middle schools and 1 high school.

Three esteemed judges, Paul Campbell, Sara Klar, Mary Leou, chose the winners based on the criteria of greening the urban environment, creativity, how well the display/project communicated the theme, and aesthetics (presentation).

The winner of Elementary School category was P.S. 23. Their project represented a cross section of STEM activities which included: a Recycling Art Club for grades 3, 4, and 5 where they re-purposed a number of items; newspaper art, party favors, etc., a "portable garden" where students in grades 4 and 5 researched and wrote essays on the nutritional value of vegetables learning the importance of healthy eating. Students grew their own vegetables which will be shared with their parents and some will be planted later in the school garden. They also used their knowledge of robotics to create a robot that was programmed to pick up trash, teaching the children both a practical skill set for their career future and the importance of respect and caring for the environment. Overall, the school presented a diversity of projects engaging students in both after school projects as well as in classroom learning across the curriculum.

The winner of Middle/High School category was M.S. 126. Using wooly pockets, students are greening their school with classroom grown edible greens which will later be planted outside to beautify the school garden. Their Reusable Electronic Art displayed a number of objects created by the students which were whimsical and practical, giving students the opportunity to use easily accessible resources creatively. Students repurposed cardboard and other paper goods to make small battery powered toys and stylish LED wrist bands. They also learned to make battery powered usb chargers from a kit which could be used to power small gadgets in an emergency. These projects engaged students in an after school program and also integrated the entire school in the wooly pocket project. Several STEM areas were addressed and well integrated with creativity and the arts. They also had an excellent display that engaged the public on a number of levels.

Each winning school received a stupendous one-of-a-kind teak trophy created by From The Source and a$1,000 cash prize! P.S. 31, P.S. 34, P.S. 84, P.S. 59, M.S. 50, M.S. 577, and El Puente Academy for Peace & Justice received Honorable Mention Awards.

2014 was also the first year for the Go Green After-Party hosted by PLAY, and organized by Good Growth Partners. It was the perfect ending to a perfect day!

Town Square would like to thank all participating organizations, sponsors, staff, supporters, and volunteers for your outstanding support and assistance. We would like to extend a special thank you to NYC Parks, OSA, our local park staff, and OSA team for their help. We couldn't have asked for better weather, friends, and partners for an awesome time at the park!

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