hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

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April 29, 2010

Haverhill's Earth Day 2010: Fledgling green fair fares well

At a well-attended first Haverhill Goes Green environmental fair, people came, listened, ate, bought, watched and learned, and left — organizers hope — a little wiser about the environment in which they live.

"I felt amazed to be at this event with great folks who are really helping the Earth," said Adaela McLaughlin of Peaceful Valley Gardens on Hawthorne Street in Haverhill.

Brightside, under the direction of Douglas Edison, organized and held the fair at Winnekenni Castle on Kenoza Street on Sunday afternoon, April 25, in celebration of Earth Day and its 40th anniversary.

Entertained by the Elle Gallo Band throughout the day, people picnicked on the lawn outside, when they weren't listening to speakers in the main entrance inside the castle.

"It went well. We couldn't have asked for a better day, and I think everybody has enjoyed themselves, here," said Brightside clerk Heather Budrewicz.

Despite the challenges of getting the first Haverhill Goes Green fair up and running, by 3:30 p.m. Sunday the Brightside group, which ran the affair in conjunction with Team Haverhill and the Winnekenni Foundation, celebrated as good a turn out as organizers say they could have hoped for.

Polly Jutras, of Fletcher Community Farm on East Broadway in Haverhill, said, "We got a lot of action at our booth," about the crowd at the fair.

"We talked with some of our regular customers, and interested some new ones in what we're doing," Jutras said.

Fletcher Community Farm is hoping to launch Community Supported Agriculture in this, its first growing season.

She said their farm had only started, and they have received an encouraging response to their efforts to bring fresh produce to Haverhill.

Brightside, a city revitalization and community organization agency, in conjunction with other city groups, like Team Haverhill and the Winnekenni Foundation, organize events like the Haverhill Goes Green fair as part of the city's initiative to keep people involved in the city and its well-being, said Mayor James Fiorentini.

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