The event, organized by students enrolled in the Growers’ Market Practicum course through the Sustainability Studies program, will host local vendors, farmers and value-added producers. Break dancers and local folk indie band Brush Strokes will perform from noon to 1 p.m. In addition, the event will feature work from the ASUNM arts and crafts studio and various student projects related to sustainability.
The expo takes place Tuesday from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Cornell Mall.
“This event is meant to celebrate and get the word out about all of the amazing sustainability-related initiatives, projects and programs that are happening both on campus and in the community,” said Jessica Rowland, the instructor of the Growers’ Market Practicum. “I think, quite often, a lot of these things fly under the radar and people aren’t necessarily aware of all the opportunities that are out there.”
The event began as a partnership between Parking and Transportation Services and the Office of Sustainability and originally focused on alternative energy and transportation, Rowland said. The expo has broadened its focus since it was taken over by sustainability studies students.
“Now it is truly 100 percent student-organized, which I think is pretty impressive for a big event like this, which has 60 to 70 vendors,” Rowland said. “I’m very proud of them.”
Rowland said she hopes the expo will give students the opportunity to meet local experts and get involved with the program and sustainability in general.
“I’m just excited to see it all come together,” she said. “It’s different every year because we always have a different batch of students organizing, leading and driving it. It always has that unique flair every time we do it.”
Cati Ambriz, a student in Rowland’s class, said people should come to the event because there will be fun ways to learn about and practice sustainability.
Also a student in the Waste Management Practicum course, Ambriz said she and her classmates will sort trash and create an interactive mural using recycled materials. She encourages students to bring waste that could be reused for the art piece to the expo.
“We have so many different methods, resources and practices in which we all can be sustainable,” Ambriz said. “Through this event, you don’t need to pay money or sign up anywhere to learn all of these practices or get in touch with some outstanding organizations here in town.”
Among these organizations is the growing collective Growing Awareness Urban Farm, a division of East Central Ministries located west of Central Avenue and Wyoming Boulevard. Missionary John Bulten said the event is a great opportunity for the farm to sell products such as seedlings, irrigation pots, honey and lip balm.
“For small urban farms like ours, we really don’t have a retail space, so these kinds of festivals are phenomenal for us to set up and sell some of our product through retail,” he said. “It gives us the opportunity to make connections with other growers and like-minded people who want to see a new world made possible.”
Ambriz said if students are interested in Sustainability Studies, they should attend the TEDx event about sustainability at the Albuquerque Museum from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday.
Lena Guidi is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @DailyLobo.