May 2013 Update

It was great to see a fabulous turn-out at the second annual South Shore Sustainability Expo in early April!  By all accounts the event had grown and matured, and the organizers were pleased to see double the number of visitors through compared to the first year.  Many Sustainability Network members either had booths or attended the event.  The afternoon forum on local food systems was also well attended and we had an informative and lively discussion.  Click here to see some photos from the event.

Many thanks to everyone who worked hard to pull off the event - special thanks to staff and students at NSCC for being great hosts, and also thanks to CSN volunteers for helping everything run smoothly! 


A hearty welcome to those who joined in the past month:
You can find out more about these groups and individuals, including what sustainability products, services, interests and ideas they have, by viewing their profiles on the Network website.

Remember, Network membership is 100% FREE and open to families & individuals, businesses, non-profit organizations and community groups, and institutions & government departments.  As a general rule of thumb, members are welcome to join from Bridgewater AND area – that means anywhere in Lunenburg County.

Upcoming Events
Know of any relevant events to add to this FREE calendar? This is your chance to inform people about all the great things going on around here!  Posting an event is easy: go to the Events section of the website, click on "submit an event", and fill in the form. One of our moderators will review the information and post the event if it meets our general criteria.  If you have any questions about what kinds of events you can post, please contact us.

Stories from the CSN Blog

Greetings CSN Members,
Spring has sprung, seeds are unfurling, and plans for the Growing Green festival are off to a phenomenal start. If you were too busy digging your garden beds to read our blog this month, here’s what you missed:

  Sustainability Expo
There was great local food, there were educational demonstrations, and there were friendships springing up all over. Didn't get to the expo? See what you missed with this photographic post.
Building Skills Through Community Engagement
Last month, Annie Morrison wrote about the Heritage Skills Employment Project. This month, we link to a video portraying the program and their final results.
Nature's Pesticide
Did you know that you can protect your flower garden with… rhubarb leaves? Learn a couple ingenious techniques to keep the critters away.
Rhubarb's a Comin'!
Once you’ve cut the leaves off your rhubarb to protect your plants, you’ll need to find a good use for the stalks.  Here are a couple quick, scrumptious, and novel recipes from Maritime Fresh to try this spring.

In the month ahead, look for posts on food security, best sustainability practices from other communities around Canada and the world, and a sneak preview of some of the events taking place at this year’s Growing Green festival.  In the meantime, we'd like to hear from you:  what sustainability topics excite you? What member organizations would you like to read about? Drop me a line at and let me know!

Sustainably yours, Elisabeth Bailey, CSN Social Media Coordinator

Join us on your favourite social media!

Home Made Beer Workshop a Frothy Success!

The Community Sustainability Network would like to thank CSN members Ken and Lyn Wilson, who opened their home to network members for a recent workshop teaching the process of making real craft beer from whole grains. The room was full of eager-to-learn beer enthusiasts! Ken ran the workshop through a step-by-step hands on process from milling the grains to bottling the beer. Participants enjoyed a wonderful vegetarian chili lunch provided by Ken and Lyn.

The event was informative and inspiring with a great dose of fun! Ken generously provided each participant with samples of various styles of beer during the workshop and each member went home with a goodie bag of his special honey lager and detailed instructions on how to make their own beer!

The Community Sustainability Network would like to encourage all members of the network to share their own special skills and ideas with other network members. Ken's workshop is a great example of how network members can benefit from learning new skills from others within our own community.

If you are interested in hosting a workshop or sharing your special skills or ideas, please feel free to contact the CSN committee and we can assist with various tasks such as promoting your event, assistance with planning and if needed, assistance with hosting.

Again, thank you Ken and Lyn! We hope you will consider running another workshop in the future because there is already a waiting list forming for the next one!!
By Cathy Wagner

Local Restaurants Serve "Sustainability Lunch Specials" During Expo

In what turned out to be a remarkable community-wide effort, eight Bridgewater restaurants participated on the day of the South Shore Sustainability EXPO by offering a Sustainability Special at their restaurants during lunchtime.

It seemed for the most part that the restaurants made significant and honest efforts towards the goal of sustainable food.  As to the specials and ingredients chosen, there was quite a bit of diversity.  Local was much more of a focus than organic. Some chose to do vegetarian specials. Free-range meats and sustainably-harvested seafood were also featured.

Some places sold out of their specials, and one sold 25.  Another restaurant found their local squash and apple soup to be so well received that they have continued to serve it!  Most restaurant owners were very enthusiastic and grateful for the opportunity and would like to be involved again.

It seems clear that restaurant owners are interested in serving more sustainable menu items (if their customers will support these efforts) but generally are unconfident as to how to go about this. As time-strapped business owners, altering the sourcing and purchasing of ingredients is daunting. This is something that CSN can potentially help with- offering support and encouragement so that moving towards sustainability isn’t so confusing or difficult.  If anyone wants to help in such future efforts, please contact us and you can get involved!
By Amanda Bostlund

"Symphony of the Soil" Film Screening This Evening

South Shore Public Libraries, Helping Nature Heal and Bridgewater and Area Community Sustainability Network are pleased to present the film, Symphony of the Soil, at the Bridgewater Library on Thursday, May 2, beginning at 6 p.m. Filmed on four continents, featuring esteemed scientists and working farmers and ranchers, Symphony of the Soil is an intriguing presentation that highlights possibilities of healthy soil creating healthy plants creating healthy humans living on a healthy planet. By understanding the elaborate relationships and mutuality between soil, water, the atmosphere, plants and animals, we come to appreciate the complex and dynamic nature of this precious resource. The film also examines our human relationship with soil, the use and misuse of soil in agriculture, deforestation and development, and the latest scientific research on soil’s key role in ameliorating the most challenging environmental issues of our time.

"Symphony of the Soil, speaks to all people concerned with life on this planet,” says Rosmarie A Lohnes owner of Helping Nature Heal.  “In order to maintain our existence here we must eat, it is the one thing we can't do without, it is also the one thing that connects all of us to the land that we walk on. Once we have learned about the dynamic relationships below our toes, it becomes so simple to see the end results. If we want to live we should all see this movie and encourage others to do so as well. It is my personal quest now to have this film in front of as many people as possible."

Best wishes!
Leon de Vreede, CSN administrator

Community Sustainability Network - Bridgewater & Area

© Community Sustainability Network - Bridgewater & Area

Town of Bridgewater

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software