Dozens of vendors and students stuck out torrential rain and lightning flashes at the annual EarthMatters green fair on Friday.
EarthMatters, NYU’s longest-running environmental club, has hosted the annual green fair for over a decade. At the fair, other on-campus environmental organizations set up stands and invited vendors such as Van Leeuwen’s ice cream truck. The fair aimed to educate and engage students on sustainable living and connect them with other students interested in environmental activism.
CAS senior Lilly Ferris, co-president of EarthMatters, handed out potted basil plants for patrons to take home under one of the fair’s tented tables. She commented on the importance of hosting events like the street fair.
“We want to give students an opportunity to learn about different environmental issues outside of the classroom,” Ferris said. “A classroom can be really formal, but I think the appeal of something like a street fair is that it’s really fun and welcoming and gives you a chance to learn about these issues in a more interactive and engaging way.”
The fair capped off NYU’s Global GoGreen Week, a student-led initiative started in 2016 that seeks to challenge students to live more sustainably for a week. This year, EarthMatters challenged students to go vegetarian or vegan for the week.
EarthMatters invited DJ Chill Will, who uses a solar panel to power his sound system, which blasted tracks ranging from the Red Hot Chili Peppers to Portugal. The Man.
“Most people don’t expect that I could put a solar panel in the middle of the road and they could walk on it, drive on it, it could be rained on — right now it’s being potentially poured on — and it’s still giving me some energy to power this system right now,” Will said.
GLS sophomore Lyle Shipp, who ran a stand encouraging students to stop using plastic water bottles, said events like these are important to bring in people who aren’t already involved in sustainability efforts.
“I think it gets a wider reach of people involved when there’s a big event with free food,” Shipp said. “It gets more random visitors than an environmental studies club where people who are already interested and know about this stuff are going to it.”
Email Emily Mason at [email protected]