Liz Harris, pictured here at age 10, will be this year’s parade Grand Marshall.

Big Bear Lake, CA, May 4, 2014 – Mining engineer and American President Herbert Hoover once said, “The supreme purpose of history is a better world,” and a local non-profit is taking this to heart. As it celebrates its 65th Anniversary this year, the Old Miners Association will still pay tribute to Southern California’s largest gold rush but also get on board with the Green Movement. The organization is challenging the community to express what they believe a sustainable future will look like. The theme for the Big Bear Heritage Parade this June is “From Wagon Wheels to Smart Automobiles – Paving the Way to a Sustainable Future.” An award will go to the parade entry that best embraces this theme, which respects the heritage of Old Miners Days, while encouraging greater responsibility to the planet going forward.

The International Chili Society’s Big Bear Regional Chili Cookoff might be nicknamed the “Green” Chili Cookoff this July. The Old Miners will take a step toward eco-friendly tasting kits, with plenty of recycling bins for the plastic tasting cups and spoons. Future cookoffs will use biodegradable and compostable alternatives, with a composting station at the event. Bicycle “hitching posts” will accommodate alternative modes of transportation, and kids can learn how to make their own paper using recycled materials at the “eco-craft corral”. Preference will be given to food vendors offering environmentally and socially responsible products and crafts, and using local products will help reduce our carbon footprint and stimulates the regional economy.