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By:  Sandra Ann  Harris  Founder, ECOlunchbox  July 2014

summertime begins and families head to the beach, the park, the
mountains and other favorite spots in the great outdoors, it’s a good
time to remember there are easy ways to celebrate our love of Mother
Nature by throwing a green party.

Step 1: Location, Location, Location
Pick a picnic spot you can walk, bike or boat to or arrive by public transit. If that’s not possible, carpool with friends.

Step 2: Choose an Eco-friendly Invitations
Whether throwing a baby shower, a beach party, birthday picnic or backyard BBQ,
you’ve got to let your guests know about the green fun you’re planning
in eco-friendly style! If it’s a neighborhood party, print invites on
recycled paper and personally hand them to guests. Or use electronic
invitations, which are convenient and don’t waste paper.

Step 3: Green Menu Planning
produce makes the chef’s job super easy. Think simple. Finger foods
like cut fruit, nuts, local honey and peanut butter sandwiches are
simple and nourishing for all ages. Also, some cheeses, like brie and
camembert, are lovely softened in the sun over fresh-baked bread.
markets have the freshest and tastiest fruits and vegetables available
from the area. Organic products are hormone and pesticide-free, making
them safe to eat.
Make your own beverage and serve it in a plastic-free pitcher. That way you don’t have to deal with all the cans and bottles.

Step 4: Waste-Free Dinnerware
goodbye to throw-aways and plastics. Ask picnickers to BYO dishes,
water bottles, utensils, etc. This can be done tastefully if you explain
you’re hosting a zero-waste party and need some help to accomplish
If that’s not your style, pack a sturdy cardboard box with reusable items to share with your invitees, such as non breakable stainless steel picnic plates, reusable bamboo utensils, reusable straws, washable cotton napkins and sturdy mason jars for use as cups.
Sure you may have to do some washing, but much of this stuff will naturally decompose. Plus, you’re saving money by going waste free.

Step 5: Showcase Mother Nature
beauty is inspiring when it comes to setting the table in eco-style.
Leaves, flowers, pinecones, twigs, seashells and other natural treasures
can be showcased on your eco-friendly BBQ or green a beach party blanket.

Step 6: Clean up!

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