German Village Gazette

Waste-reduction effort underway in Village

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A new Go Green committee initiative aims to significantly reduce waste at the Meeting Haus and next year's Haus und Garten Tour.

"If we're going to have the largest fundraiser be as green as it can be, we have to have the Meeting Haus be as green as it can be," said Jordanne Renner, who is chairwoman of Go Green.

"It has to be in tandem," she said.

Go Green is partnering with the Ohio EPA on the objective, which will use a series of checkpoints to identify potential problem areas.

A weekly audit could be instituted to make sure to see whether the objectives were being met, Renner said.

"Jordanne and I have done a lot of talking about an audit for the Meeting Haus -- where can we be more efficient, make better supply choices, seal windows -- whatever it might be," said Shiloh Todorov, German Village Society director. She added, no specific date has been set.

It would be the second year Go Green has gotten involved with the Haus und Garten Tour, which is the largest fundraiser of the Society.

Last year, the committee had recycling stations at PreTour locations and the Party on the Platz, and printed tour tickets on recycled paper embedded with wildflower seeds, some of which were planted in the Village. The flowers should be in bloom this year -- a testimony of the effort, Renner said.

This year, tour officials will reduce the number of program pages for the Haus und Garten Tour and combine what had been a program and separate map into one printed document, Todorov said.

The map will be inside a program that goes from about 60 pages to 16 or fewer.

"For PreTour invitations, we will eliminate the RSVP card and printed menu," Todorov said.

"So, the paper invitation will go out and tell you how to look up the menus online and then purchase your ticket online, or come to the Meeting Haus and purchase in-person," she said.

The Ohio EPA is eager to participate in the effort, which is a good launching point for further waste-reduction efforts, said Erin Strouse, spokeswoman for the agency.

"This is kind of new territory and it's exiting for our folks who are trying to promote landfill diversion in new and exciting ways," Strouse said.

"We're at the beginning of this whole thing," she said. "We have to get creative."

The overarching goal is to spread the initiative to businesses and residences in the neighborhood, Renner said.

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