Community Environmental Council’s SB Earth Day Festival Wins Sustainability Award; 2017 Event Announced

The Community Environmental Council (CEC) will host its 2017 Earth Day Festival at Alameda Park Saturday, April 22 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday, April 23 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The announcement comes on the heels of Santa Barbara Earth Day winning a sustainability award from FestForums Convergence, a bi-annual festival industry conference held in New York and Santa Barbara. The award reflects the festival’s greening efforts, such as requiring that all food vendors use locally grown ingredients, annually recycling or composting upwards of 93% of all waste, and in 2016 reducing overall waste by nearly 30% through such measures as water refill stations and reusable beer cups. CEC was honored to share the FestForums stage with world-renowned groups, including long-time CEC supporters Jack and Kim Johnson, another 2016 sustainability award recipient.

The 2017 festival – which is free to attend – will encourage participants to share how they  #actonclimate, highlighting the need for urgent grassroots action on climate change and summoning the activist energy that led to the first Earth Day in 1970. In support of this action-oriented theme, Sunday morning will feature a public  forum and discussion focused on climate action and innovation. Hosted by LoaTree, participants will be asked to listen, discuss and engage.

Event registration for vendors and musicians opens Tuesday, February 7 on

In the days leading up to the festival, CEC and its partners will host a series of Earth Month events, including the annual Earth Day Green Drinks hosted by LoaTree in March. Details for Earth Month events will be announced in upcoming weeks.

Festival highlights will include:

  • The annual Green Car Show – featuring the largest collection of efficient and alternative fueled vehicles in Southern California. Festival-goers can get a first-hand feel for the latest electric vehicles and hybrids by participating in the free Ride & Drive experience.
  • A Public Square that offers the opportunity to speak one-on-one with public officials.
  • A free Bike Valet, with complimentary bike tune-ups and secure all-day parking. (Over 1,100 bikes were valeted and another 500 self-parked in 2016).
  • A Homegrown Roots zone that connects attendees with local farmers, food and beverage artisans, and organizations working to promote sustainable food systems in the Central Coast.
  • Two full days of music on the Main Stage, organized by New Noise, as well as music and speakers on two mini stages.
  • A tasty assortment of local, sustainable, and organic menus at the Food Court.
  • A Beer & Wine Garden, located in the middle of the festival near the Main Stage, with beer on tap from Firestone Brewery and local wines.
  • A Kids Corner organized by LearningDen Preschool, with arts & crafts, musical performances, storytelling, face painting, and eco-activities, along with a Family Passport that promotes kid-friendly activities throughout the park.
  • A Great Outdoors zone where attendees can take part in fitness activities and discover regional businesses advocating healthy, eco-friendly lifestyles.
  • Celebrity appearances. Recent festivals have included stage appearances by activist Van Jones, scientist and TV host Bill Nye, Director James Cameron, actress Daryl Hannah, ocean activist Marcus Erikson, and Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk – all of whom were awarded the annual Environmental Hero Award.

Now celebrating its 47th year, the community-organized festival is one of the longest-running Earth Day celebrations in the country – and is believed to be one of the largest Earth Day festivals on the West Coast. Santa Barbara’s environmental reputation attracts national media, celebrity attention, and local crowds; the 2016 festival drew over 30,000 visitors.

CEC is partnering with LoaTree, New Noise, Oniracom, and WA Events to produce the festival. Keep current with festival updates by following Santa Barbara Earth Day on Facebook and Twitter. For more information about Earth Day: go to, email or call 805-963-0583 ext. 108.  

About CEC’s Santa Barbara Earth Day

Widely acknowledged as the birthplace of Earth Day, Santa Barbara’s involvement began with the devastating 1969 oil spill off its coast. This led a local group of concerned citizens to begin discussing a different way of looking at environmental systems. During that time, Senator Gaylord Nelson visited Santa Barbara to view the oil spill damage. When he returned to Washington, D.C., he introduced a bill designating April 22 as a national day to celebrate the earth. Over the next few years, the environmental movement was born across the country – including CEC. In the spring of 1970, CEC incorporated and, in its initial act as a new non-profit, hosted Santa Barbara Earth Day, one of the first celebrations of its kind in the country.  

For up-to-the-minute information on CEC’s Santa Barbara Earth Day Festival:

About the Community Environmental Council (CEC)

Since 1970, CEC has led the Santa Barbara region – and at times California and the nation – in creative solutions to some of the toughest environmental problems. CEC pioneers real life solutions in areas with the most impact on climate change. Our programs provide pathways to clean vehicles, solar energy, resilient food systems, and reduction of single-use plastic.

Find CEC on the web at and on Facebook/CECSB and Twitter/CECSB.

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