By Kelly Halpin
Many thanks to the volunteers who supported the Sierra Club’s booth at the annual Rondo Days Festival on Saturday, 7/19! The Sierra Club attended the annual St Paul festival once again in order reach out to the community, stand in solidarity, and help promote clean energy for Minnesota. We collected petitions to protect our communities from the health and environmental impacts of coal, talked to concerned community members and enjoyed meeting some of our partners in the fight against climate change. The annual event featured live music, face-painting for the kids, and full day of food, fun, and community for those who are part of the St. Paul and Rondo area.
Sierra volunteers successfully gathered nearly 200 petitions and reached out to elected officials, health professionals, and community members in attendance at Rondo Days. Thanks to the large number of enthusiastic volunteers who came to help SC, many of us were able to wander the festival a bit, interacting with other participants and attendees. We came across fellow non-profit and campaign organizations, as well as a large group of nurses and other health professionals who supported our sustainability efforts as a means to protect public health. In between complimentary health screenings for community members (and SC volunteers too!), these professionals shared their knowledge on how the air we breathe and food/water that we consume directly affects the health of a community.
Coal pollutants negatively affect these necessities, especially in areas with limited access to health services, and therefore it was very important to reach out to community members about these concerns. We at the Sierra Club couldn’t agree more, and were excited to hear these thoughts echoed from the assisting nurses and community members throughout the day.
As a whole, Rondo Days was a welcoming and highly positive opportunity for the Sierra Club to continue its summer outreach, and we thank the many volunteers who participated and brought so much support and enthusiasm.