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Andersonville hosts Green Week

Andersonville is bursting with activity in the middle of its Andersonville Green Week celebration, highlighting the ongoing greening of the neighborhood’s small business district.

An array of activities continues through the weekend, with a community block party this Saturday, July 17, from 4 to 7 p.m. on Balmoral between Clark and Ashland.

There are restaurants featuring locally-grown food, workshops and book readings, a range of children’s activities, films, and tours of everything from community gardens to local breweries.

The block party will feature entertainment by local bands, line-dancing, activities for kids, food and a special Green Week organic beer brewed by Hamburger Mary’s, one of eco-Andersonville’s nine certified sustainable businesses.

Green Week is the newest initiative of eco-Andersonville, a sustainability project of the Andersonville Development Corporation, which features a rigorous green business certification program, a streetscape recycling program, and a green building incentive program.  Since Newstips noted the program’s launch in April of 2009, the number of green certified businesses has more than doubled.

Already noted for a thriving business district almost entirely consisting of locally-owned, independent businesses,Andersonville is now emerging as Chicago’s greenest neighborhood and a model urban community, said Nina Newhouser, manager of Green Week.

“We wanted to celebrate what businesses and residents are doing day-in and day-out in this community,” Newhouser said.  “We just reached out to the neighborhood, and the response was amazing.”

Some highlights of Andersonville Green Week:

Tours: a tour of an 1883 farmhouse getting a LEED upgrade (Friday and Sunday, 10 a.m.); and a tour of historic Rosehill Cemetery (Saturday, 9:30 a.m.); a walking tour highlighting Andersonville history (Saturday at 10 a.m.); a tour of two local brewers and a distiller (Saturday and Sunday at 3 p.m.); an urban trees walking tour (Sunday at 10 a.m.), a community garden walk in West Andersonville (Sunday, 2 p.m.).  Some tours have already sold out.

Kids events: Local author an illustrator Alexandra Gnoske discusses her children’s book, Loui Saves the Planet (Saturday, 11 a.m.) and local author Geraldine Macenski reads from Happy, Healthy Gigi! (11:30 a.m.) at Green Genes, 5111 N. Clark, with the Eco-Storybook Project, an interactive workshop on sustainable life choices for kids at 12 noon; Make Your Own Nature  Book for kids (Saturday, 11 a.m.) at the Swedish American Museum, 5211 N. Clark); and a kids corner hosted by State Representative Harry Osterman, with face painting, arts and crafts, and yoga, at the block party.

Locally grown food is being featured at In Fine Spirits, 5420 N. Clark, and Big Jones, 5347 N. Clark – and Hamburger Mary’s (5400 N. Clark) features a homebrew competition Thursday night and a showing of film dealing with sustainable agriculture (Saturday at 7 p.m.).

Chicago Filmmakers (5243 N. Clark) presents the Chicago premier of the Sundance award-winning film Gasland (Friday, 8 p.m.)

Recycling: Green Gene’s is collecting e-waste and t-shirts for recycling (the t-shirts are used to makepaper) through the week.  There’s also cell phone recycling at Andersonville’s T-Mobile (5358 N. Clark), bicycle recycling by Working Bikes at the block party, and a discussion on Sunday afternoon of a pilot project to turn dog poop into fuel.

Unity Lutheran Church (1212 W. Balmoral) holds a green worship service, concert and open house, Sunday at 10:15 a.m..

There are demonstrations of rain barrels (Saturday, 1 p.m.) and composting (Saturday, 2:30 p.m.) at Green Sky (5737 N. Clark).  Urban Worm Girl demonstrates worm composting Sunday at 1 p.m. (1636 W. Summerdale).

The full schedule is here (pdf).

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Category: Andersonville, environment, retail


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