Electric Cars, Green Investment & Family Fun at this Year’s EcoFair at the Barns

Posted on Nov 21, 2016 by EcoFair at the Barns

8th annual EcoFair at Artscape Wychwood Barns.
8th annual EcoFair at Artscape Wychwood Barns.

The 1,700-plus people from babes in arms to older seniors who poured through the doors of the Wychwood Barns for the November 6 EcoFair were in for a treat for all their senses, including their sense of empowerment. The high attendance provided a resounding 'yes' to the question of whether Torontonians are thirsty for information about how they can reduce their environmental impact.

Volunteers welcoming attendees to the EcoFair.
Volunteers welcoming attendees to the EcoFair.

This family-friendly and action-packed day drew 500 more people than last year and was one of BlogTO’s top five free events for the week in Toronto. At this eighth annual EcoFair, more than 40 exhibitors provided information on topics ranging from urban biking with CycleTO, to vegetarian living with the Toronto Vegetarian Association, to renewable energy with SolarShare and Bullfrog Power.

Electric cars and free test drives from Plug'n Drive.
Electric cars and free test drives from Plug'n Drive.

Many attendees treated themselves to driving one of three leading electric cars – the Chevy Volt, BMW i3 and Nissan Leaf. They also participated in droves in free hands-on activities including learning to caulk a window to reduce the leakage to the outside of heat in the winter and of cool air in the summer, finding Toronto’s lost rivers, getting their clothing fixed at the Repairathon, and making pioneer crafts and eco-friendly cleaners for their homes.

Kids enjoying the Pop-up Adventure Playground presented by Earth Day Canada.
Kids enjoying the Pop-up Adventure Playground presented by Earth Day Canada.

The younger set were far from left out of the chance to try fun, free and educational activities. They made origami paper pots to plant with seeds courtesy of Kids Growing City, used a microscope to sneak a peek at the bevy of bugs in a local stream with Ontario Streams and explored a POP-UP Adventure Playground with Earth Day Canada.

Good food prepared by the West End Food Co-op.
Good food prepared by the West End Food Co-op.

“We love bringing the EcoFair to the public every year; it’s a fun event that helps keep the November blahs away, and it’s so inspiring to learn from and celebrate the many people, groups, and businesses that are leading the way towards a healthier more sustainable future. There are actually dozens of things we can do to improve our quality of life, live more sustainably, while creating a healthier city for our kids and grandkids,” said Lee Adamson, who co-chairs the organizing committee.

Kids of all ages also enjoyed good food prepared by the West End Food Co-op, Lemon and Allspice, and Cocobananaz.

The EcoFair closed with a free screening of the family-friendly and fun film 'The Clean Bin Project: A Competition Where Less is More.' Audience members pondered whether they themselves could live waste-free for a year.

The EcoFair was co-organized by Green Neighbours 21 and Transition Toronto, and was sponsored by Meridian Credit Union. For more information – and to get a taste of what your visit may be like to next year's EcoFair – go to https://ecofairtoronto.org/.

By Rosemary Frei

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