The annual Earth Charter Community Summit at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh begins on Friday, Oct. 5 and will continue through Oct. 12.
The objective of the Earth Charter festivities is to raise attention and support the values and principles of a sustainable future. The slate of events is presented by UW Oshkosh’s Campus Sustainability Office, which encourages students to participate.
The American Democracy Project (ADP) is looking for applicants to participate in the second annual Creating a Stronger Community Contest. The contest is looking for a person or group with the best idea on how to create excitement and action around community-building projects in Oshkosh. A cash grant will be awarded to the winner. Applications can be found on the APD website and the deadline is Oct. 7.
Also on Oct. 5 from 10:30 a.m. – 2:50 p.m., students eating at Blackhawk Commons on campus will see a reduced menu but donations of the food saved will be given to the Oshkosh Area Community Food Pantry in an event called Titans Take on Hunger Lunch.
During the summit, to support the nonprofit organization Growing Oshkosh, two 20 by 48 foot hoophouses will also be constructed on Oct. 6 at the United Way/Hooper Community Center, located at 36 Broad St. One of the hoophouses will be open to the public as an educational learning lab. “The other will be dedicated to commercial production, harvesting and composting,” according to the sustainability website.
There will be an Earth Charter Banquet on Oct. 8 from 6 – 9 p.m. at the Reeve Memorial Union Ballroom 227, which will include a meal and a presentation by Ed Newman, one of the minds behind Recyclemania, a national university recycling competition. Tickets for the banquet are available at Titan Central in the Reeve.
A panel featuring experts discussing career opportunities in renewable energy jobs will be held on Oct. 9 from 9:40 - 11:10 a.m. in Reeve 201. Later that day, Brian Kermath, UWO director of sustainability, will speak in the Reeve Theater 307 from 3:30 – 4:30 p.m. about sustainability and the task the University has committed to it.
Free reusable water bottles will be given out to students on Oct. 10 by the Student Environmental Action Coalition for a pledge to reduce the use of plastic water bottles. The h20 Water Bottle Campaign will be held in Reeve from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
The summit will also feature a speech by Danielle Boerson of Boerson Farm, an 80-acre certified organic farm in Green Lake County, which is “committed to organic and sustainable farming practices that heal the land, increase biodiversity, and produce amazingly delicious whole foods,” according to its website. The speech will be held on Oct. 10 from 5 – 6 p.m. in Sage Hall room 1216.
Grab a brownbag lunch and join Dani Stolley from Growing Oshkosh, a nonprofit organization that raises awareness of the benefits of fresh, local, all-natural and native food and food production. Stolley will present How to Grow Fish, Food, Flowers, Habitat and Hope in Oshkosh: A presentation about Growing Oshkosh, Inc. in Reeve 221 from noon until 1 p.m.
The last event of the summit will be the Community Gardens Harvest Party on Oct. 12 from 4:30 – 8 p.m. The Community Gardens Organization needs help “putting the garden to rest for winter.” There will be free food, garden-related demonstrations and a bonfire. The organization encourages the use of mud shoes or work boots due to it being muddy. The community gardens are located behind UWO’s Vehicle Maintenance Facility off of Ohio Street.
The events are sponsored by the UW Oshkosh Provost Office, Campus Sustainability Office, the Student Environmental Action Coalition and the Community Gardens Club.