Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Nice Day for a Green Wedding

This past weekend my niece Jesse married her sweetheart Phil. The ceremony left me quite teary-eyed. It was also beautiful, located at the home of Chandler Swain and Mike Reynolds (my sister-in-law and brother-in-law), which overlooks the Canadian Mississippi River in the Ottawa Valley.

Jesse and Phil are committed to being agents of good in the world – Jesse has volunteered at Child Haven in Nepal and the two of them plan to return within the next few months to continue her work there. This will be their honeymoon. Naturally they wanted to begin their married life together on the right foot(print).

The wedding took place outdoors, so no energy was required to cool the place down or light the place up. Just good ole wind and sun. The flowers came from Chandler’s brilliant pesticide-free garden. The wine was from Ontario wineries and the beer was brought to us by Steam Whistle, a micro brewery based in Toronto and Ottawa that is committed to sustainable business practice. In fact, Steam Whistle also provided the biodegradable cups which are made from recycled material.

The bride and groom tried to ensure that the food was as local and organic as possible. All of the food was made at Chandler’s home or brought in by friends. Family members and long-term friends who traveled from afar pitched in to prep and cook during the days leading up to the wedding. It was a marvelous opportunity to connect with Jesse and Phil’s extended community.

More Tips on Greening a Wedding
For more information on making a wedding as carbon neutral as possible, please check out the links below. Special thanks to 60 Percent Campaign reader, Mary Beaty who is a Humanist Chaplain based in Ontario and New York. Mary is a huge advocate of green weddings – so much so that she is responsible for not just one but two - TWO blogs devoted to everything you need to know about making your wedding green and ethical. and

Mary provides lots of great information ranging from green gift registries and eco-friendly dresses to event carbon calculators and carbon offsets….and much much more. Do check out the sites. If you know of anyone getting married, please let them know about them.

Invited to a Wedding? Tips on Greening your Attendance
If you are attending a wedding, I encourage you green your own contribution through your gift, outfit and travel arrangements. If you need a new outfit, why not buy from a local designer? If you are traveling, why not offset your travel through a carbon offset company such as Planet Air?

A wedding is a promise between two people. Let it be a promise to the planet and to the next generation as well.


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