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Chelan Earth Day Fair going virtual this year

By on March 27, 2021 in Events with 0 Comments

By Gary Myers

Like the swallows to Capistrano, if it’s the third Saturday in April, it’s time for the Chelan Earth Day Fair.

Since 1989, the fair has been the community’s unofficial coming out party for Spring. Riverwalk Park traditionally swells with visitors, and one of the longest running Earth Day events in the state has grown to include over 100 educational booths and demonstrations, arts and crafts vendors, a large collection of electric vehicles, local produce and a book and plant sale.

 Facing the challenge of hosting an event during the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, the organizers decided to reinvent the wheel for 2021 and go virtual. First, they had to figure out just how to define that.

 Co-coordinator Anne Brooks says the answer came from an unlikely place, thousands of miles away. “We did an internet search and found a group in Piedmont, North Carolina that managed to put together a virtual Earth Day fair last year. They actually had fun with it by combining informative and fun video segments and live presentations and panel discussions via Zoom.”

 Of course, Chelan has a habit of putting its own spin on things.

 “We decided to take advantage of the opportunity to capture some of the fun and color that the fair is known for, but also to present information in an entirely different way,” she said.

 The answer is to utilize the chelanearthdayfair.org website to digitally host the fair this year. The goal is to still have the full slate of activities, music and information of the traditional fair, and combine it with live panel discussion and Q & A’s with experts on topics from ways to preserve Lake Chelan’s water quality to backyard chickens.

Links to the live sessions will be available on the Earth Day fair website.

 “Once we started thinking about it, we realized a virtual fair opened up a whole world of possibilities as far as guests we could feature, but also the people who could attend, so to speak,” said Anne.

 April 17th will also mark the release of a two hour video presentation that is designed to highlight the various aspects that make up the fair in the park, including musical performances by Kevin Jones, Older & Wiser and Savanna Woods, interviews with experts from organizations like the Lake Chelan Research Institute and Cascadia Conservation, and the latest in electric vehicles with Plug In NCW.

 Attending is easy, and you can do it from anywhere you have an internet connection. Check out chelanearthdayfair.org for details.

 In the meantime, Anne said, don’t worry about the future of the fair, “Next year we’ll be back in the park. We’re excited to get back to normal.”

Gary Myers and his wife Leslie usually organize and host the music on the Chelan Earth Day fair entertainment stage.

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