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Today is Earth Day and this past weekend was filled with all kinds of festivals, lectures, classes, etc. to commemorate the day. I am glad that we have a day to celebrate the earth, to raise awareness, to bring people together around common interests and to educate. This is good. However, I think most of us agree that it takes an everyday commitment to honor our planet, and by doing so, we make changes within our own lives and hopefully are getting creative and working hard to create change on a larger scale.

I walked through a beautiful Earth Day festival to attend the first of a series of meetings where the attendees will try to do just that. A call was put out to gather people from all over Pasadena/Altadena who are involved in food justice and sustainable food projects to begin a dialogue about how we can work together to strengthen the movement toward a healthier, sustainable food system. There were people there from faith-based organizations, community garden organizers, school garden coordinators, school chefs, master gardeners, entrepreneurs, folks who are working to change policy regarding urban farming and food production, individuals, and so many more; An inspiring group of people.

The meeting was just an introduction, a place for everyone to say who they were and that they were interested in this dialogue. A few broad, guiding goals were presented. Now it is up to those who show up, come to the next meeting, and the next to figure out how to make bigger change happen in our community. The Next Course Pasadena dialogue feels like a good effort toward something bigger.

Happy Earth Day!

And, to leave you with some further inspiration, take a look at this Ted Talk. Ron Finley creates and fights for gardens in South Central Los Angeles.