Enjoy the sunny outdoors and beautiful blue skies as you relax this Memorial Day weekend with friends, family, co-workers and neighbors.
Grill Like A Champion: If you need to buy a new grill for the occasion, choose propane over charcoal. Charcoal releases volatile organic compounds (VOCs) when burned as well as over 100 times more carbon monoxide than propane.
Traditional lighter fluids used on charcoal grills are also fairly nasty for the planet. If you do grill with charcoal, you can reduce it’s Eco-impact by purchasing briquettes made locally from sustainable and recycled wood scraps.
Green Grub: Choose local or organic foods whenever possible. Shop for fruits, vegetables, meats and dairy products at your local farmers market.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with some vegetarian selections such as grilled tofu, vegetable kabobs, soy dogs or veggie burgers to reduce the meal’s environmental footprint. Can’t beat the meat, well then go big and go home with a large portion of local, sustainable and ethically raised animals for a healthier option with a delicious, fresh taste.
XStation Playbox: Summer BBQs are all about relaxed, outdoor fun, so leave the battery operated toys behind and make sure you have plenty of balls, Frisbees, hula hoops, butterfly nets, buckets and bubbles (1/2 cup eco-friendly dish soap, 1 1/4 cup water, and 2 tsp sugar) for kids to play with.
1. Let your guests know that you are trying to be more environmentally responsible with your BBQ. If you don’t let them know, it will be harder for them to help out.
2. Don’t buy decorations that are going to be thrown away at the end of the evening. Use what you already have, borrow decorations or decorate sparsely.
3. If you can, use cloth tablecloths and napkins, and durable plates, utensils and cups. A great way to preserve our beautiful country.
4. If you are going to use disposable, do it wisely. Find products that are made from recycled materials or that are biodegradable. You can usually find them in the paper plate isle of your grocery store.
5. Be a Sharpie About Reducing Plastic Cups! Keep a black Sharpie by the plastic cups, and have people write their names on them so they don’t use more than one cup for the afternoon.
6. Offer organic wine or local beer choices to diversify your beverage choices in a more sustainable way. By reducing the miles that the beverages have traveled to reach you, you’ll be conserving fuel and reducing green house gas emissions.
7. Make recycling easy! Have clearly marked receptacles so people can easily put recyclables where they belong.
8. Be a trash picker when it’s all done. We know it can be gross, but pick out things from the trash that shouldn’t be there and put them where they should. Get guests motivated to help by doing this right after the BBQ and nothing has time to decompose or make the situation worse.
9. A great way to host an Eco-friendly barbecue is to make sure you’re not wasting electricity inside when everyone is outside, never overlook the obvious. Turn off all the unnecessary lights and appliances in your home before you head out the door.
10. Most Importantly, don’t be the green, preachy police. Enjoy your event and do the best you can, but if someone uses two plastic cups, get over it.
From all of us at ‘How Can I Help?’… Enjoy a Fun, Safe and Relaxing Memorial Day Weekend!
Memorial Day is a day for remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Be kind to those who serve our country and take time to reflect on those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to protect our core ideas and way of life.
History: Formerly known as Decoration Day, it originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War. By the 20th century Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military services.
Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, particularly to honor those who have died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in national cemeteries.
Annual Decoration Days for particular cemeteries are held on a Sunday in late spring or early summer in some rural areas of the American South, notably in the mountains. In cases involving a family graveyard where remote ancestors as well as those who were deceased more recently are buried, this may take on the character of an extended family reunion to which some people travel hundreds of miles. People gather on the designated day and put flowers on graves and renew contacts with kinfolk and others. There often is a religious service and a “dinner on the ground,” the traditional term for a potluck meal in which people used to spread the dishes out on sheets or tablecloths on the grass. It is believed that this practice began before the American Civil War and thus may reflect the real origin of the “memorial day” idea.
Memorial Day is not to be confused with Veterans Day… Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving, while Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans, living or dead.
It typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.