Review: Greening Your Event

Michigan’s Great Southwest Sustainable Business Forum hosted a luncheon workshop for on green event organizing and recycling on Friday, February 24 at Western Michigan University’s Southwest Campus.

View photos of the event on our Facebook page.

The organization assembled a panel of experts that have led sustainability efforts at events and venues large and small, including corporate meetings and picnics, fairs and concerts, volunteer events, and weddings, throughout Michigan and the Midwest.

Presentation topics included recycling anecdotes from various outdoor events, green event coordination involving recycling/composting & water usage, sustainable wedding planning, and environmental organization event planning ranging from volunteer events to corporate luncheons.

Presentations from the meeting are available below:

Thank you again to Western Michigan University Southwest for hosting this month’s event.

Michigan’s Great Southwest Sustainable Business Forum Merges with West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum

Michigan’s Great Southwest Sustainable Business Forum has completed a merger with West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum to create the largest regional organization for sustainable business practitioners in the Midwest.

The combined organization, headquartered in Grand Rapids, will serve 220 member organizations and the general community in a 10-county territory that stretches from Muskegon County to the Indiana border with a unified mission of promoting business practices that demonstrate environmental stewardship, economic vitality, and social responsibility.

The merger allows MGSSBF to share administrative costs with the larger program and invest more resources to its mission.  It is already bringing new programs to the Great Southwest, including a recycling user group based on a successful program in the Grand Rapids area, an initiative to help local events and fairs implement recycling and sustainability programs, and a program to capture unique waste materials for use by artists.

Continue reading Michigan’s Great Southwest Sustainable Business Forum Merges with West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum

Forum to Host Green Event Workshop and Networking Event

BENTON HARBOR — FEBRUARY 15, 2017 — Michigan’s Great Southwest Sustainable Business Forum will host a luncheon workshop for local businesses, event planners and other interested parties on green events and event recycling on Friday, February 24 at Western Michigan University’s Southwest Campus.

Implementing recycling and other sustainable practices at Southwest Michigan events is a consistent interest of Sustainable Business Forum members and a strategic priority for 2017. Through feedback captured at this event, MGSSBF will work to create a toolkit for local organizers. A committee recently launched to assist local cultural events with implementing recycling and other practices.

To begin this effort, the organization has assembled a panel of experts that have led sustainability efforts at events and venues large and small, including corporate meetings and picnics, fairs and concerts, volunteer events, and weddings, throughout Michigan and the Midwest. Presenters include:

Roger Cargill, Special Events Manager at Schupan Recycling leads a team that has provided recycling expertise to Michigan State University sports events, NASCAR, Common Ground in Lansing, Herman Miller company picnic, and the Green Street Fair in Plymouth, as well as many other sporting, music and community events.

Alyssa Ferguson, Principal of Fleurology Designs, is a floral designer, artist and consultant that has worked with wedding venues throughout Michigan.

Autumn Sands, Sustainability Manager for Barfly Ventures, has led sustainability efforts for a series of large-scale, multi-block events at various Hopcat locations throughout the Midwest, most notably Irish On Ionia, a zero-waste event that each year serves over 15,000 revelers in Grand Rapids.

Daniel Schoonmaker, Executive Director of West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum has organized over a hundred events on behalf of environmental organizations over the past decade, ranging from 1,000-person volunteer events to corporate luncheons. He has developed and tested protocols to help planners with incremental improvements on food sourcing, carbon offsets, recycling and general sustainability, and will speak on partner efforts underway in Grand Rapids to improve event recycling in downtown Grand Rapids.

The event includes lunch, networking, a panel presentation and will end with a facilitated discussion that will help local businesses, event organizers, volunteers and other interested parties develop recycling and sustainability plans for events. Lunch is $15 for MGSSBF members and $20 for prospective members if paid online.

Learn more and register here.