NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk’s Taylor Farm Park might have been the only place in Connecticut where a family could grab an organic grilled cheese sandwich, test-drive an electric car and take a ride on a solar-powered merry-go-round this weekend.
The fourth annual Live Green Connecticut Festival continues at the Calf Pasture Beach Road park. Part environmental exhibition, part fall fair, the festival invites companies from across the area to demonstrate their eco-friendly initiatives. The exhibits include test drives of Ford’s electric and hybrid cars, consultations from green renovation companies and information booths from local environmental advocacy groups.
“We tried to show the public that even regular businesses are taking extraordinary measures to make their businesses more sustainable,” said Daphne Dixon, one of the event’s organizers.
One of the largest of the new exhibitors was Frito-Lay. The snack company has the largest fleet of clean-burning natural gas trucks in the country. The company also uses electric trucks in its deliveries in major cities, one of which was on display at the festival.
Along with the exhibitions, the festival also includes many activities for families. Local bands have been scheduled to perform all week. Kids can visit the fair’s petting zoo and ride on a solar-powered merry-go-round. And local food trucks set up shop in the picnic area.
The Live Green Festival itself also got even greener this year. All of the uneaten food waste from the picnic area is being collected to turn into compost. After the compost is ready it will be donated back to the Taylor Farm Park to act as fertilizer.
The exhibition also featured its regular stable of locally-based businesses that are based solely on an environmentally-conscious bent.
For example, Sea Green Organics of Bridgeport was on hand to sell its fertilizer made from seaweed. The mixture holds water better than other commercial fertilizers, and does not damage watershed ecosystems when it washes away as storm run-off.
“Our product works off the growth hormones that are in the seaweed naturally,” Sea Green Organics COO Paul Melancon said. “We just found a way to extract them, purify them and put them in a bottle.”
The Live Green Connecticut festival continues Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Taylor Farm Park, at 45 Calf Pasture Beach Road, Norwalk.