News & Events

2017 Sustainability Fair & Market: Speaker Series

Sustainable North Grenville will again host a series of presentations and workshops at this year’s 10th Annual NG Sustainability Fair & Market on Sunday 23 April, 2017.  There will be a wide range of exciting topics for living well and sustainably.

At 10:30 AM, Peter Rooney – a local beekeeping expert – will pick up where he left off from last year’s popular presentation on backyard beekeeping.  This year he’ll look more closely into the myriad of challenges honeybees face: the decline of nectar and pollen producing plants; indiscriminate pesticide use; a changing climate; and a vampire-like mite that has caused billions of dollars in hive losses in the last two decades.  Will the honeybee survive?  You’ll learn more about these and the other challenges of caring for bees, but you’ll also hear of the joys of helping Mother Nature keep her plants flowering and prospering and how – if you get it right – you get a share of the profits for yourself.

At 11:30 AM, Dr Ellie Bennett will share with us plans to establish the International Centre for Sustainable Rural Communities in Downtown Brockville.  With administration already underway to establish the ICRSC as a not-for-profit, there are plans to raise capital so that construction can begin as early as 2018.  The Centre will be the focus of efforts from across North America and Europe to inspire creative, innovative, and effective ways for people and nature to thrive together in rural communities. It will include institutes for freshwater and for restoring wetlands, conduct sustainability training for farmers, sponsor citizen science, and promote bee boxes in backyards.  Join Dr Ellie Bennett to hear how the ICSRC will achieve the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere program’s strategic objectives for sustainable rural communities.

Join Janice Ashworth and Dick Bakker at 12:30 PM to learn about the future of community power in Ontario.  They will present concrete examples of how groups can shape the future of electricity generation highlighted with experiences from the Ottawa Renewable Energy Co-op (OREC).   You will learn about emerging trends and developments around community power in Ontario and beyond, and have a chance to ask questions about how you can possibly get involved as well.

At 1:30 PM, Darcy Whyte will ask you to take the challenge of powering your cell phone with clean, renewable energy.  He’ll describe his own personal journey through small, accessible solar module and battery technologies, and show you how he got to the point where he can generate enough energy to support his phone.  His presentation is fun; his delivery style is humorous, warm and friendly, and he makes the session both enjoyable and memorable.  Let Darcy show you how to power your cell phone with sunlight and become more conscious of the energy we use, where it comes from, and how it is made.

Equally exciting, but located in the north rink of the Municipal Centre at the Electric Vehicle “EVent”, Jeff Goodman will be presenting twice – morning and afternoon – about the new developments in electric vehicles.  It is such an exciting time: fully battery-operated cars are now proven to be more cost-effective than their gasoline equivalents and they have the range and a new network of rapid chargers along all of Ontario and Quebec’s major routes and urban centres.  Jeff will show you what’s new and what to look for when buying your first EV.  Find out about the virtually zero cost of maintenance, the generous rebates and the mileage costs that are 1/5th that of fossil fuels.  And don’t forget to ask him about the feeling of driving past gas stations and reflecting on how long it has been since he last visited one.  And while you are at the show, talk to all the other owners there with their cars, see the new models that dealers are bringing, and even go for a test drive to feel the excitement for yourself!

Don’t forget to check out the other great features of this amazing family-oriented event.  The main hall is full of booths representing a cross-section of our community: entrepreneurs & artisans, marketeers & natural health practitioners, not-for-profits and community groups.

There are awesome hands-on activities for your kids and talented musicians to entertain you.  This year’s roster of live performers is all local acts and will be performing during the fair.  The acts range from ladies contemporary and rootsy vocal group Bella Borealis (10 am) to instrumental pianist-composer Alexis Earl (11:15 am).  After lunch, (12:30 pm) the folk-world music trio Fiddlehead Soup will perform, with singer-songwriter Bruce Enloe closing the day and starting at 2 pm.  The music can be found near the concession area in the main hall.


The NG Sustainability Fair & EV Show are free to attend.  Don’t miss this opportunity to have fun, learn and make contacts that will connect you with your community and help you move down the road to sustainability.


The 10th Annual NG Sustainability Fair & Market

Sunday 23 April, from 10 until 3

North Grenville Municipal Centre

285 County Road 44, Kemptville