Blog : Stonyfield Goes the Extra Mile with the Earth Day 5K and Fair

By Mike | Apr 30, 2015 | in

By Mike Bizier

Many people may know Stonyfield Farm for their organic yogurt, but what customers might not be aware of is that Stonyfield puts an equal amount of care into sustainability as well. In 1997, the company became the first in the US to eliminate all greenhouse gases from facility use. In 2006, Stonyfield successfully implemented a waste water treatment system that converts waste into biogas, and in 2010 the company introduced the first yogurt cup made from plant-based materials.

It’s clear that at Stonyfield, every day is Earth Day.

Stonyfield will celebrate Earth Day on Saturday, May 16 with a 5K race followed by the company's Earth Day Fair. The Fair will be held at Stonyfield Yogurts Works campus from 10 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and is free to the public, and guests are encouraged to arrive at least an hour before hand. A large turnout is expected, with over 1,400 attendees slated to come.

According to Stonyfield’s Community Marketing Manager Fil Kovisars, the company first started the event in 2010 with just 20 vendors. This year, the Earth Day Fair and 5k will welcome over 70 vendors. 

“The Stonyfield Earth Day Fair and 5K race are all about families and the community coming together to learn more about Stonyfield and learning from other companies how they can preserve and protect the environment,” Kovisars says. “Run New England has rated our event number one out of the top 10 5K events in New England as well.”

The race course is relatively flat, starting and finishing at Stonyfield’s headquarters. Last year 1,700 runners ran the course.

The 5K race itself will start at 9 a.m. and will be split into two separate races, an Adult race and a Youth (17 and under) race. Registration can be completed online. Registration fees for the Adult race are $30 per runner before midnight on May 12 and $35 the day of the race, while the Youth registration costs $20 in advance and $25 the day of. 

All proceeds from the 5K race will go to charitable causes, with additional funding raised will help maintain Stonyfield’s onsite habitat for the highly endangered New England Cottontail rabbit; experts estimate only be a few dozen of the species remain, mostly scattered across the region. Other proceeds will be donated to support New Hampshire’s Non-game and Endangered Wildlife Program’s conservation work.

Along with the 5K races, there will also be free Bunny Hop kids’ races starting at 11:15 a.m. The first race will be for kids three and under, with parents encouraged to run along. The next race will be for kids aged four to seven, followed by a race for kids eight to 10 years old. Registration for the Bunny Hop races can only be completed on race day under the red tent by the start/finish line for the 5K from 8:00 till 11:15 a.m.

At the fair, guests will be greeted with live music from rock band Pat and the Hats, free yogurt samples, games and activities for the kids, and demonstrations of various green products. Vendors will showcase a wide variety of sustainable services including Greater Manchester Habitat for Humanity, part of the wider nonprofit Habitat for Humanity that makes affordable housing for impoverished areas across the world, Atlantic Green Energy, a Seabrook company that provides solar power, and Klean Kanteen, a company based in Chico, California that produces reusable stainless steel water bottles. 

Stonyfield’s impressive sustainable track record has also grabbed the attention of the Green Alliance, a Portsmouth-based organization focused on promoting local environmentally conscious businesses and connecting them with like-minded consumers. The Green Alliance will be at the Earth Day Fair promoting the sustainability initiatives of its Business Partners - from restaurants, to home building companies, solar installers and more.

Additionally, three Green Alliance Business Partners will be on-hand at the fair as well. Green Maids from Portsmouth will display their all-natural green cleaning products and talk about how the products they use when cleaning a clients' home are a safer alternative to both the environment and a homeowner's health. The popular, award-winning Smuttynose Brewing Company will have a selection of their sustainable craft brews available for purchase, to those aged 21 and older, at the beer garden next to the event stage. And the Coca Cola Bottling Company of Northern New England will have bottled beverages, like Dasani water in a plant-based eco-bottles, and Honest Tea, made with organic tea leaves, available.

Kovisars has high hopes for this year’s Earth Day 5K.

“This year’s event is going to be bigger and better than ever. The new kids’ zone will be very exciting and we will also have a demo match from the New Hampshire Roller Derby. “

To learn more about Stonyfield’s Earth Day Fair and 5K event, visit www.stonyfield5k.com

Registration for the 5K race can be completed at www.stonyfield5k.com/registration

For more information on The Green Alliance, go to www.greenalliance.biz

To find out more about the Smuttynose Brewing Company, go to www.smuttynose.com 

For more information about Green Maid’s products and services, visit www.greenmaidscleaning.com