Now that nicer weather is finally here, it’s time to get out and enjoy the great outdoors!  Perhaps your summer plans include picnicking or hosting a backyard barbeque.  These are wonderful times of making memories with those you love.  They can also be very environmentally friendly activity with just a little extra planning.

Our favorite outdoor places to gather tend to be some of the most beautiful spots, so work hard to respect that beauty and keep nature beautiful and litter-free. Here are some tips on planning a low waste gathering that all can enjoy:

A family, with parents, children and grandparents, enjoy a picnic

  • Reduce & Reuse:  Provide reusable utensils, cloth napkins, plates and refillable water bottles or cups.  If you are venturing away from home, food can be packed in reusable plastic, glass or steel containers to be washed and reused for your next adventure.
  • Buy Recycled & Recycle: If you must buy disposable tableware or packaged items, buy those with high post-consumer recycled content.  Also, be sure there is a way to collect used bottles, can & cups for recycling.
  • Hike it, Bike it, Walk it:  For those events away from home, try to choose a destination nearby and get moving by hiking, biking or walking instead of driving.  Doing so not only adds to the “adventure factor”, but it’s good for you and good for the planet.
  • Bugs & Sun:  To help ensure everyone has a good time, research and provide all natural sunscreen and bug repellent.
  • Keep it Natural: Plan a fresh, local and/or organic menu.  A trip to the Farmer’s Market will give you some great inspiration (look, there’s another adventure!).
  • Bring Me a Bucket:  Bring a small bucket for compostable food to be dumped in the compost pile at home.

Not sure where to plan that next get together?  We are blessed with many great parks here in Hendricks County!  Maybe your family should make it a goal to visit every one of them this spring, summer & fall.

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