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Our Projects...   Present and Past 

Since its inception in 2012 ACES members have been busy promoting climate smart initiatives and many other forms of environmental advocacy- everything from pesticides & pollinators to recycling, native plant species and the single use plastic/disposable waste crisis. We focus on positive solutions and strive to build collaborative efforts with educators, fellow residents, businesses and elected officials in our community.

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Garden Tool Swap

We celebrated Earth Day and Springtime on April 22nd, 2023 at Hamlin Park with our inaugural Garden Tool Swap Freecycle! Gently used items such as shovels, rakes, hoses, birdfeeders, ceramic pots, hand tools, seeds & seedlngs were traded with neighbors. Residents were invited to bring what they could, if they could, and take whatever they wished! Chemicals of any kind (fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides, etc.), mower or power tools, broken items, or Items too large to carry were not allowed.

All items were given and taken freely. Nothing was for sale.

Donations were not required to participate, nor did participants have to take anything. The only "Swap Rule" was to take just according to need so everyone could participate. Unclaimed items were donated after the event was over.

Our co-sponsor for this event was the newly formed Town of Aurora’s Climate Smart Community Task Force.

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BYOC!

 

(BYOC: Bring your own cup, container, cutlery)

Look for our our ACES Window Sticker in the windows of participating local restaurants and businesses that have agreed to allow customers to BYOC and/or engage in other sustainable practices, such as eliminating single-use disposable products.

We'll promote the businesses who are making a difference in our community on our Facebook Page. Look for the ACES Window Sticker beginning in November 2022 and remember to BYOC- EA!

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East Aurora Climate Smart Pledge

On May 7th, 2012 ACES members working with the League of Women Voters, were instrumental in persuading the East Aurora Village Board to adopt the Climate Smart Pledge.  One of the few requirements of the pledge is that the government entity should make their energy use public. The village website has links to their Energy Use Data for the years 2016 through 2021. This is an ongoing project that transitions through different administrations and requires attention, education of new Board trustees, and other administrators to ensure continuity. 

Erie County Climate Action Plan

ACES was invited by Erie County to discuss ways to become a community working group/chapter to help develop a county-wide Community Climate Action Plan. We co-sponsored the roll out of their Climate Action Plan at a public forum held at the East Aurora Senior Center on March 29th, 2023. You can read more about the Erie County Climate Action Initiative through their website here.  

Taste of Aurora

ACES works with the East Aurora Chamber of Commerce to reduce the amount of trash generated by the Annual Taste of Aurora Food Festival. We've successfully encouraged restaurants to ditch the styrofoam, the single use plastic, including straws, and offer paper/cardboard alternatives. Volunteers, working with local youth, help festival attendees sort their trash into proper containers. In recent festivals, the Chamber of Commerce reports that we've diverted approximately 80% of festival trash from the local landfill!

EA Plastic Ban

ACES supported East Aurora High School student, Anthony Mercurio in his efforts to present his Eagle Scout proposal to the Village board. He proposed a ban on plastic straws, stirrers, and utensils in Village restaurants. The effort succeeded- the sale of these items are now banned in the Village of East Aurora!

Carolcade BYOM

"Mr. Vidler On the Roof" is proudly displaying his reusable Hot Cocoa Mug at East Aurora's Annual December Carolcade on Main Street. ACES members launched a campaign to promote awareness about the excessive styrofoam cup use and litter that occurred with each well-attended event. Now, carolers from near and far are encouraged to follow Mr. Vidlers example and BYOM- Bring Your Own Mug! 

Kiwanis Ends Use of Styrofoam
at Annual Chicken Barbeque!

Thanks to the tireless efforts of founding members Anita Conron

& Ellen Neumaier, the Annual Kiwanis Chicken Barbeque pledged

to stop using styrofoam containers for their meals. This event previously used over 3500 styrofoam dinner containers per event.

With highly persuasive data, Anita  & Ellen educated the

organizers about the negative impact of styrofoam to human

health and the environment.  Kiwanis replaced the styrofoam containers with the biodegradable paper containers that are

currently in use.  

Highway Dept Cuts Herbicide Use

The Aurora Town Highway Department has significantly cut back

on pesticide/herbicide use along roads, ditches, town parks,

West Falls JP Nicely Park, Major's Park, Hamlin Park, Knox Farm,

and town soccer/athletic fields. This decision came after

members of ACES met with Town of Aurora Highway

Superintendent, David Gunner. ACES presented convincing data

about health & safety issues, worker safety and environmental

harm from herbicide use. 
 

Home For A Gnome

ACES promotes the Erie County “Home for a Gnome” Earth Day Project at the Taste of East Aurora. This community education project focuses on healthy & environment-friendly landscape practices for residential lawns, such as: 3 inches mowing height, reduced and deeper watering techniques, planting of native grasses, use of organic fertilizer and. lawn aeration. To sign the pesticide-free lawn pledge and receive your own "Home for a Gnome lawn sign, click here. 

For alternatives to using Roundup, check

out this terrific link. You can have a beautiful

yard without harmful pesticides!

Borderland Festival Outreach 

This was a super creative and fun art project by renowned ACES and community artist, Jeannet de Jong.  ACES members, students and citizens collected plastic bottle caps for several weeks and festival attendees created this beautiful mural! ACES members also donated their labor to the Borderland Zero Waste Team, collecting and sorting waste and successfully diverting most of it from the landfill. 

No Mow May & Grandest Dandelions

ACES supports and promotes the East Aurora Village's "No Mow May", which encourages residents to allow their lawns and plants to flower through May- thus providing food for early pollinators. We also cheer on The East Aurora advertiser's annual "Grandest Dandelion Photo Contest". To learn how to enter your winning dandelion click here.  Our efforts educate citizens on the importance of bees, butterflies and other vital pollinators- and the threats posed by pesticides and lack of suitable food sources. 

Annual Zero Waste Summer Picnic

In August on a summer's eve,  we sponsor a Zero Waste Potluck Picnic, inviting all to pack their picnic baskets with reusable plates, napkins, tablecloths, cutlery, and drinkware to show off their favorite Zero Waste Style! A bucket for food scraps is provided and the scraps are destined for compost-making. Everything from elegant, to casual, to funky bohemian, and country chic- It's a visual delight second only to the food! We have been equally delighted with acoustic entertainment from some of East Aurora's finest musicians who've serenaded us with violin, guitar, folk singing, and ukuleles! This year's picnic is scheduled for August 17th from 6-8pm at the Hamlin Park Kiwanis Picnic Shelter. Everyone, young & old is invited to attend. 

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