GreenFest 2018 - Explore, Connect, Act!

WHEN: Saturday, April 21, 2018 (rain or shine)
TIME:10am to 4pm
WHERE: Howard Community College
PAPER SHREDDING: Shredding will be available in Parking Lot B from 10am-2pm (or until trucks are full). Visit our shredding webpage to learn what you can and can't bring.

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  • Over 75 tables with local green businesses and environmental non-profits
  • Native plant sale
  • Columbia Families in Nature children's activities
  • Robinson Nature Center children’s activities
  • Free compost bin giveaway
  • Workshops and speakers
  • Kid’s craft table
  • Live birds and reptiles on display with local experts
  • Local food vendors

Speaker and Workshop Schedule

Rain Barrel Workshop and Give-Away - 11am

Rain barrels catch water from your roof through a downspout. 50 free barrels, including the parts, will be given away following an informational workshop. Seating is limited, so please visit the GreenFest welcome desks between 10:00 and 11:00 for more information and tickets. Tickets will be handed out on a first-come, first-served basis. Howard County residents only please. Even if you are not sure you are ready for a rain barrel, you can attend the workshop to learn about them.

Paper Shredding - 10am to 2pm*

Visit the HCC parking lot for a paper shredding event from 10am-2pm (*or until trucks are full). Up to three bags or boxes of documents can be brought for free shredding. Learn more about what's accepted. Please use your regular recycling collection for items that do not have personal information on them.

Keynote Speaker & Awards Ceremony - 12:30pm

Attend a special seminar with a local entrepreneur! At 12:30pm CEO and Co-Founder of Hungry Harvest, Evan Lutz, will discuss the growing problem of food waste and what our community can do to solve this widespread issue. Immediately following, the Howard County Recycling Division will honor local businesses and community organizations by presenting its inaugural “Business Recycling and Waste Reduction” and “Green Community Leadership” awards.

Mini workshops on Do-It-Yourself (DIY) tasks - 10am to 12pm in the James Clark Library south lobby

  • Basic sewing skills with Heather @ 10-10:25am
  • Rewire a lamp with Charlie @ 10:30-10:55am
  • Make homemade toiletries with Kristine @ 11-11:25am
  • Create plastic bag mats with Lorretta @ 11:30-11:55am

Repair Cafe and Time Bank Tool Swap - 12pm to 3pm

Bring small items from home that are in need of repair (e.g. toasters, lamps, clothes, toys, or electronics). Specialists will evaluate the items and fix as many of them as they can for FREE. Volunteers will also be available to provide resources and answer questions about repairs on items that are too large or not possible to bring in, such as plumbing or large furniture. Hosted by Transition Howard County and held in the James Clark Library room 138. See graphic above.

Wildlife Room

Join us in the Wildlife Room for a walk on the wild side and visit with Scales and Tales. The Maryland Turtle and Tortoise Rescue will have turtles and snakes on exhibit too! Do you know about Snakehead? You can learn about this invasive fish found in Maryland. 10am to 4pm.

Free Prize Raffle

Three lucky winners will be fully equipped to Explore, Connect, Act in the community and beyond. Pick up your ticket at the Welcome Table and enter to win the GRAND PRIZE upstairs at the Recycling Division’s booth. 10am to 4pm.

Nature Songs - 12pm

Join singer Stina the Nature Troubadour for Birds the W.O.R.D. a rocking 50's nature musical that soars into the four avian concerns of birds today. Families dance, sing songs, and solve puzzles. 45 minute duration. All ages. Parent participation required.

Recycling & Donation Opportunities

Special collections for eyeglasses, cell phones, binoculars and worn out denim jeans will be available for residents. From 10am to 2pm, GreenDrop (see below) will be collecting small household donations including electronics, toys, shoes, clothes, kitchenware and games. A food drive to benefit HCC’s food pantry, which assists students in need, will also be available.


Downsize. Donate. Deduct. Bring your used items from 10am to 2pm. Here is a flier with what they can accept!

Geocaching - 1pm to 1:30pm

Geocaching merges technology with getting outside! Howard County Recreation and Parks is hosting a half hour introductory workshop from 1-1:30pm. Experienced geocachers can also visit the Welcome Table to pick up a guide to temporary caches that are being set up for the day of GreenFest.

Chain Saw Sculpture Demonstrations

A local artisan will be crafting sculptures from fallen trees and stumps. Sculpture demos will be ongoing throughout the day and sculptures will be available for purchase.

Safe Skies Maryland

An initiative of the Maryland Ornithological Society (MOS), Safe Skies Maryland will be onsite to raise awareness about the challenges faced by our migratory and resident birds. Learn simple ways that residents can reduce the threat of collisions with man-made structures.

Take a look at our 2017 GreenFest

Thank you to all who attended GreenFest 2017, and special thanks to all of our vendors, workshop hosts, volunteers, sponsors, and Howard Community College.

The event was a huge success with a turnout of over 2000 people even with the frequent rain showers.

Highlights from the Event:

  • 267 people attended educational workshops
  • 50 trees were planted in the new Columbia 50th Anniversary Scholarship Forest
  • A 150 square foot Native Bulb Garden was planted
  • 86 local vendors, non-profit organizations, and government agencies were represented in the galleria mall
  • The Repair Café fixed over 30 household items gave advice about 14 items that were too large to bring to HCC

The following items were collected for recycling or re-use:

  • 234 denim jeans
  • 21 donations to Goodwill
  • 27 cell phones collected for re-use
  • 82 eyeglasses collected for re-use
  • 350 bags of paper for shredding, which amounted to 22,730lbs of shredded paper being recycled

For more information, please contact Alan Wilcom at or 410-313-6433.

Fun at Past GreenFests:

Greenfest 2017 

GreenFest 2016

GreenFest 2015

GreenFest 2014

GreenFest 2013

GreenFest 2012

GreenFest 2011

GreenFest 2010

GreenFest 2009