How to Throw a Green Party

10 of 10 in Series: The Essentials of Living Green with Children

Every big life event — birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, holidays, and religious festivals — deserves to be marked in an appropriate way. Celebrate in a way that’s green, and you extend your focus on an environmentally friendly lifestyle to every aspect of the fun. Use these strategies to green your celebration:

  • Cut back on printing. Sending invitations electronically is the greenest way to issue an invitation. If you must print, use post-consumer recycled paper and skip the extra sheets often included in wedding invitations.

    Sending electronic invitations is good for the planet and your postage costs.
    Sending electronic invitations is good for the planet and your postage costs.
  • Go organic. Choose local, organic food for celebratory meals, whether you’re having the celebration at home or in a hotel or restaurant. If you can’t find an organic caterer, find one who is willing to use organic ingredients that you provide.

  • Support Fairtrade. Be sure that the party supplies you buy were made by workers treated fairly for a business that supports economic justice and sustainability. Check stores that offer Fairtrade products first, and then head online if you still need items for your celebration.

  • Decorate naturally. Use natural rather than artificial decorations, including potted or garden plants that guests can take home after the celebration (ask a local garden center for advice). Use twinkle lights you already own or candles made from eco-friendly substances, and drape a reception hall with fabric you can put to good use afterward. If you choose cut flowers, enjoy them and then compost them after the party.

  • Green the gifts. Request or give green gifts: Suggest donations to green or sustainable causes, or put green items on the gift registry list. Other low-impact, green gifts include artwork, tickets for the theater, or gift certificates for a restaurant specializing in local cuisine.

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The Essentials of Living Green with Children

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