2011 ECO-NOMIC LIVING EXPO by Larry Williams, UF/IFAS Extension Agent

The 2011 Eco-Nomic Living Expo will be Saturday, February 5th from 10am to 3pm at the Emerald Coast Convention Center located at 1250 Miracle Strip Parkway in Fort Walton Beach.

The Expo features nationally  known speakers, seminars, exhibits and workshops on sustainable living, gardening, money management, healthy living and more. There will be special activities for teens and children. Nationally known speakers include Dr. Jennifer Languell and Thomas Gossom, Jr. Languell has been featured in BusinessWeek and on CNN Headline News, HGTV and CNBC’s “Bullseye” and is co-host on the Discovery Channel “Project Earth.” Gossom is an actor, writer and communications professional. A couple of his television roles include in The Heat of the Night and Boston Legal.

A few of the seminar topics include: Coupon magic, Saving Money with Technology, Meals in a Snap,Smart Savings with Mobile Devices, How to Save $500, Simple Ways to Save Water in the Landscape and Vegetable Gardening: Keys to Success in Northwest Florida. I will provide a seminar titled “How to Grow a Florida Lawn” with emphasis on how to grow a green lawn while keeping some “green” in your pocketbook.

Some of the Activities include: “Trash to Treasures” where children will learn how cool it is to recycle. “Animal Ambassadors” is an exhibit with live animals from the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge. “Composting for Kids” will introduce youth to composting. “Bizzy Li’l Bees” is a fun interactive activity for children to learn about bees offered by Okaloosa County aster Gardeners.

Workshops offered by the Okaloosa County Master Gardeners include “How to Plant a Tree” and “Not Your Mama’s Container Gardening.”  The Choctawhatchee Basin Alliance will provide two workshops on how to build a rain barrel.

There is no cost to attend the Expo and all seminars/workshops are free except for the rain barrel workshop. This workshop costs $40 with participants taking home the rain barrel they make. Because of limits on space and materials, please preregister for the rain barrel worksop by calling 689-5850.

Sponsors include: Eglin Federal Credit Union, Gulf Power, Okaloosa Saves, Okaloosa County, University of Florida Extension, Northwest Florida Daily News, WFGX-TV 35, WEAR-TV 3, Okaloosa County master Gardeners, First National Bank of Crestview, Waste Management, Cumulus Radio, Okaloosa Home and Community Education Council, Okaloosa Gas, Okaloosa County Teachers Federal Credit Union, BG Products, CCB Bank, Okaloosa County Sustainable Committee, Fitness for Everyone and Premier Community Bank.

For complete schedule and more information, visit http://okaloosasaves.org .

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