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Smaller, leaner EcoFest

Educating children about ecology is the theme of the Endangered Planet Foundation’s second annual One Earth, One Dream EcoFest, which will take place Oct. 3 to 4 in the Lumberyard Mall, 384 Forest Ave.

The free, public event aims to increase awareness of our impact on the planet while exploring what each of us can do to sustain it, through children’s presentations and workshops, interactive seminars, and innovative “green" exhibits.

Charles Michael Murray, founder of Endangered Planet, said the event was moved to a smaller venue this year in order to keep the festival going in an ebbing economy.

“We wanted to keep the dream alive even though [low] budgets have impacted people’s lives and businesses, including our foundation," he said.

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“We felt having a smaller venue would make for an intimate setting, and by keeping it free to attend, would provide the community outreach desired."

The festival will also include presentations from noted speakers including Dr. Jill Goldman, Earl Richmond and Chris Prelitz, as well as artistic displays, films about water issues and local heroes, organic wine tasting and live music performances by Roots Foundation, Still Smokin’ and Birdsong and the Eco-Wonders for the kids.

The children’s Art Miles Mural Project and SEEDS Arts and Education will be a main focus, Murray said, as will Goldman’s “Wolves Under Fire" presentation and Richmond’s “Revillagigedo Archipelago" film project.

In the film, which addresses sustainable fishing, Richmond explores the remote Mexican underwater location and comes across two illegal fishing vessels.

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“Our program shows the tremendous beauty of these islands and the immediate need for conservation to protect this one-of-a-kind marine ecosystem," Richmond said. “We will also discuss the impact our filming has had in preservation and the need to continue the work ahead of us."

Goldman, a comparative psychologist and animal behaviorist who has lived with wolves, said she will educate EcoFesters with “the truth about wolves, their unique and fascinating qualities and current plight for survival."

A solar architecture user for more than 20 years, Prelitz will give a presentation on the benefits of the time-tested way of building that harnesses free natural energies like heat from the sun, the cool of the earth and daylighting.

He will also have a book signing for his 2008 release, “Green Made Easy."

The opening ceremony is at 11 a.m. Oct. 3 at Laguna’s Main Beach Cobblestone area.

“Let’s celebrate each other and the world, as we ‘wake up’ and ‘imagine’ the personal and technological opportunities we now have and use them to embrace new solutions as we make this a better place for our children’s grandchildren," Murray said.

Endangered Planet Foundation is a nonprofit dedicated to ensuring the survival of the Earth through the arts, education, dialogue, the dissemination of knowledge and the recognition that innovation can provide many of the answers that will lead to a sustainable future.

For more information about the foundation or for a full list of events, visit www.endangeredplanet.org.

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