Illinois Sustainable Living and Wellness Expo

Guests and exhibitors at last year's expo.

March 28, 2014              

BLOOMINGTON, Ill.— Whether it is to explore a Tesla Motors premium electric vehicle or 1975 CitiCar electric, sample delicious, locally-grown food, learn ways to live more healthfully, or explore gardening techniques, the annual Illinois Sustainable Living and Wellness Expo has something unique for every visitor. A Zero Waste event, the expo is planned and managed to avoid waste that is not recyclable, reusable or compostable.

On Saturday, April 12 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., approximately 100 exhibitors and 20 presenters will explore the expo’s themes of Living Well & Living Green and Creating Healthy Communities at the Illinois Wesleyan Shirk Center for Athletics and Recreation. With activities and information for children, college students and adults, this year’s expo, which is free and open to the public, marks the ninth year of collaboration between Illinois Wesleyan University Wellness and the Ecology Action Center.

Presenting at the expo will be Assistant City Attorney of Champaign Joe Hooker who will address the current efforts aimed at protecting the Mahomet Aquifer, which is the water source that underlies parts of McLean, DeWitt and Champaign Counties, among others.

In Clinton, Ill., there is a landfill that may receive polychlorinated biphenyls, commonly known as PCBs, which are very toxic hazardous wastes. “This is potentially a significant threat to the drinking water supply for hundreds of thousands of residents of Central Illinois,” said Michael Brown, executive director for the Ecology Action Center. The discussion of PCBs tie in with other environmental issues, including the use and disposal of hazardous wastes. There will be exhibitors with information about the aquifer, as well as another presenter and tables that will provide information about hazardous wastes.

The Renewable Fashion Challenge will return this year, offering participants the chance to imitate a high-fashion outfit using clothing from local thrift stores. The event, which is hosted by the Ecology Action Center and Home Sweet Home Ministries’ Mission Mart Thrift Store, aims to promote stylish clothing without the environmental cost.

Midwest Fiber Recycling
will again exhibit at this year's expo.
Midwest Fiber

Special guests Chefs Ken Myszka and Stu Hummel, of Epiphany Farms Enterprise’s (EFE) and Station Two Twenty restaurant in downtown Bloomington, will hold two cooking demonstrations. Maintaining a “Farm to Fork” vision, EFE grows the organic ingredients that are showcased in every dish on the Station Two Twenty menu.

From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., the expo will host a Mega Recycling Event in the northeast corner of the Shirk Center parking lot, where electronics, household batteries, clothing, textiles, shoes, compact fluorescent bulbs, plastic garden pots and teracycle items (a list of which can be found here) will be accepted. For more details, contact the Ecology Action Center at (309) 454-3169. Bloomington-Normal’s Confidential On-site Paper Shredding will also provide free residential document shredding.

Bloomington’s Mission Mart Thrift Store and Two Blokes and a Bus, which features a globally inspired, seasonal menu, will both offer their products for purchase.

See a full list of exhibitors.

The following is a sampling of main events and workshops:

  • 9:15 a.m. – Tai Chi Demonstration on the Main Stage
  • 10:00 a.m. – Renewable Fashion Challenge on the Main Stage
     Pam Atkinson’s presentation, Wallet Wellness: Grow Your Green Stuff, in the North Classroom
     Jack Pfaffmann’s presentation, From Lawn to Native Garden, in the South Classroom
  • 11:00 a.m. – David Berchtold will perform on the Main Stage
     Kerry Kidwell’s presentation, GREEN by the Numbers, in the North Classroom
     Joe Hooker’s presentation, Protecting the Mahomet Aquifer, in the South Classroom
     Patt Schneider’s Belly Dance Fitness in the Practice Gym
  • 12:00 p.m. – Cooking demonstration with Myszka and Hummel at the West Side Demo Area
     Jody Nord’s presentation, Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy 2014 Updates, in the North Classroom
     Melanie Shellito’s presentation, The Coop Grocery Revolution: Grow Food = Social Change, in the South Classroom
  • 1:00 p.m. – Presentation of McLean County Green Awards on the Main Stage
     Russ Rybicki’s presentation, Socially Responsible Investing: Investing With Your Values, in the North Classroom
     Bill Wilson’s presentation, Building EarthCamp Village, in the South Classroom
  • 1:15 p.m. – Tom Ricker will perform on the Main Stage
  • 2:00 p.m. – Cooking demonstration with Myszka and Hummel at the West Side Demo Area
     Ramila Khatau’s presentation, Ayurvedic Health and Reflexology, in the North Classroom
     Bart Cannon’s presentation, Recycling Industrial Waste Into Beneficial Products, in the South Classroom
  • 2:30 p.m. – The Old Men Boys will perform on the Main Stage

For additional information, contact Missy Smock, director of IWU’s Wellness Program, at (309) 556-3334 or Brown at (309) 454-3169.

Contact: Tia Patsavas ’16 (309) 556-3181,