Earthfest event in Bellevue teaches kids the importance of sustainability

Families from all over the region spent their time in the sun at the Bellevue Botanical Garden Saturday to enjoy the view and celebrate Mother Nature at the garden's Earthfest event.

Here in the Pacific Northwest, those sustainable habits to save the environment start young.

The garden has been part of the community for many years, but this is the first-ever Earthfest event. Its sustainability team told FOX 13 the event is all about growing the appreciation for Earth and continuing the conversation on how we can preserve it.

Whether it's spring tulips or the lush, green trees – there is always something we can appreciate stepping outside in Washington. But, making something this beautiful stand the test of time – that's up to all of us humans.

"Sustainability is extremely important to our lives here in the northwest and everywhere, just as citizens of the planet," said Sofia Fall, sustainability program coordinator for the City of Bellevue.

Fall said events like Earthfest at the botanical garden propel a crucial conversation forward. How can we all do our part in preserving local nature? For us, and the future generations to come.

"Kids have a really natural ability to appreciate natural spaces, natural environments – and I think it's really cool how we can kind of bring together our love for the planet and our love for the environment that we live in," Fall said.


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FOX 13 met two-year-old Mika, a young Washingtonian already taking interest in her local environment. Mika's visited the garden in Bellevue with her family, but, she's already creating eco-friendly habits at home.

"As much as we can do – recycling, composting, you name it," said Amanda Sekijima, visiting from Woodinville. "And Mika is starting from a young age, too."

Mika wasn't the only child doing her part. FOX 13 met little Harper with her nana as well.

"We love our garden," said Nancy, visiting from Seattle. "We have lots of trees and flowers. We do try to have native plants around. Harper has a garden at her house, too, and they just planted some things."

Harper's nana, Nancy, is a former educator. She tells us it's important to teach these environmental habits from a young age.

"When I took my kindergartners in the park, we actually did walk up to trees and kiss them because I wanted them to have a real connection, an actual physical connection," Nancy said.

Bellevue's goal Saturday is that guests realize at any age, we can all appreciate the beauty around us and work to protect it each day. That can be through recycling, saving water, or planting something new.

"I think it makes it more in your face when you see it every day and the beauty around you," Sekijima said. "And, it makes it that much more important to preserve it."

Bellevue has some goals for the future. By 2050, they’d like greenhouse gases to be reduced by 80%. As of 2022, more than 90% of community greenhouse gases come from buildings and transportation. The goal is to have 100% renewable energy by then as well.

Earth Day is on Monday, so you have time to make your own sustainable goals at home.


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