Trash Barge

View Gitanjali "Mishty" Deb's profile

Often individuals have to seek a creative new ways to inspire their local community to take action for local environmental issues cause that they are passionate about. The employees and customers of Dallas’s Mockingbird Whole Earth Provisions are attempting to do exactly that. They are using their creative spark to really galvanize our local community by building a trash barge. What exactly is a trash barge you may ask? I talked to Whole Earth Provision’s employee Ryan Oldreive to find out more.


It turns out that for over 3 years the employees of the Mockingbird store have been deeply involved in the “For the Love of the Lake” non- profit that strives to keep White Rock Lake clean and trash free for everyone to enjoy.   Whole Earth Provisions have been such passionate supporters that they have even officially adopted a piece of shoreline on the North West side of the lake. Every month employees gather to clean trash from adjacent parking lots that collects in the lake. Ryan informs that because of the wind flows and water currents, their particular stretch of shoreline is a real trash magnet. Additionally, it’s a difficult area to keep clean because the water level is well below the edge of the bank. However, the Whole Earth Employees are creative and passionate, so they simply use their kayaks to grab a hold of trash from the water instead of trying to just collect trash from standing on the bank.


But their passion and creativity does not stop there. When one of the employees heard an NPR story about an Island made out of trash, he was inspired to build a trash barge. The employees are gathering trash (mostly plastic bottles) that they find when cleaning the lake and trash that has been donated by employees, friends and customers. They will use this trash to build a barge they can tow with their kayaks when they are cleaning their adopted portion of White Rock Lake’s shoreline. The barge will not just be made out of trash and recycled products, but it will be used to help clean up the lake, showcase the trash that is being found in the lake and perhaps most importantly inspire others to get involved and keep White Rock Lake a little cleaner. For information about the trash barge stop by or contact Whole Earth Provisions located at 5400 E Mockingbird Ln # 110, Dallas, TX 75206-5381.

"100-Mile Dinner" Benefits Promise of Peace Community Garden

View Anna Clark's profile

Elizabeth Dry, Executive Director of the Promise of Peace Community Garden, shows us that you don't lead from position, but from vision. A public school educator for almost 30 years, Elizabeth now educates students, community leaders and executives on the power of the garden as a teaching tool. "By cultivating a spirit of ownership in families both poor and affluent, this garden teaches children and adults to cherish the earth and to see those who help tend it as part of their community," says Elizabeth.  Established in 2009, Elizabeth's project has garnered significant media attention as a proactive, hands-on way to improve our environment while fostering community, improving health, supporting local vendors, and preventing crime.  It's sustainable development in a nutshell.


At a recent EcoTuesday Dallas event at Times Ten Cellars, Elizabeth shared inspiration for ecopreneurs and other participants.   Her advice, which stems from her experience in conceiving the idea and subsequently being awarded a funding grant from the City of Dallas, is simple but profound. "Work as hard is you can on your plan," she told us, "but remain flexible enough to step back and let your project take its own course.  I've seen miracles unfold in my garden.  Don't be so controlling that you crowd out the opportunity for magic to happen."  Relationships are flourishing along with their first spring harvest, proving the success of Elizabeth's formula for sustainable development.  As far as I can tell, the secret to Elizabeth's success is, "Let others build it and they will come."  If people support that which they help to create, you expand your influence when you make a place for others to participate in your mission.


Dallas-area residents can support this remarkable community garden project by participating in an unprecedented dining experience on Thursday, May 13 at 6:00 PM.  If "local" is the new organic, then the 100-Mile Dinner is the hottest ticket in town.  Everything on the menu right down to the salt is to be sourced from within a 100-mile radius of Dallas. The stellar lineup of chefs such as such as Graham Dodds of Bolsa and Sheena Croft of Hannah's are preparing a five-course dinner of high-quality eco-cuisine.  The 100 Mile Dinner will run from 6:00 to 10:00 PM at the newly refurbished White Rock Filter Building with a view of beautiful White Rock Lake.  Reggae music by Aton and raffles (prizes include a chance to drive a Smart car for a weekend) will make this event one to remember. 


Tickets are $100 apiece and can be purchased at Times Ten Cellars and Downing Hill.  Proceeds go toward the Promise of Peace mission to decrease the dropout rate at Woodrow Wilson High School as well as to reduce the teenage pregnancy rate and gang involvement in East Dallas.  Funds raised will help pay for POP summer camps for kids, where they'll learn photography, healthy lifestyles, art, and take a field trip to a local farm.  For more details visit www.promiseofpeace.us or email Elizabeth directly at ejdry54@yahoo.com.