Wellness Expo to encourage sustainable habits

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Kristina Dolack

The Illinois Sustainable Living & Wellness Expo (ISLWE) is raising expectations on Saturday, April 12 with numerous new exhibitors and presenters coming to the Shirk Center from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

Co-sponsored by Illinois Wesleyan University and the Ecology Action Center (EAC) in Normal, the Expo “zero waste” event is free and open to the public.

This year the Expo will feature cooking demonstrations from the chefs of ANJU Above and Station 220, a TESLA S, four other electric cars, the Peace Core and a pack of Alpacas.

The Expo’s purpose is to encourage community members to acknowledge the connection they have with their health, everyday necessities and the environment.

They encourage students to learn how to live a more sustainable and healthier life from a variety of exhibitors, presenters and demonstrations going on throughout the day.

All the essentials will be covered including: food, water, shelter and transportation. At 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. Chefs Stu Hummel and Ken Myszka will put on two cooking demonstrations and provide food tastings of what they have prepared.

With the premise behind their cooking being farm-to-fork, Hummel and Myszka will show just how easy it is to cook with fresh produce and animals raised on Myszka’s farm.

Station 220 and ANJU Above are in Downtown Bloomington, which are two major attractions to students. ANJU Above is an affordable choice for students to have a date night or group dinner with friends and family.

Station 220 is a good option for special events, but at a higher price. The seasonally sensitive menus highlight the best of each season’s harvest and supports Epiphany Farms.

Out in the parking lot, along with the Mega Recycle, there will be a Pig Roast brought to you by Chef Shamon Bell and Huelskoetter Pork in the Shirk parking lot. Samples and buns will be handed out until everything is gone. Fear not though, Two Blokes and a Bus will be out serving lunch starting at 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. or when the food runs out.

Get there early and stay late! No one wants to miss out on food samples, but don’t forget about your bike. Free bike tune-ups will be provided by members of WalkIn-BikeOut Repairs.

Sophomore Adam Garcia offered some advice about the free bike tune-ups from last year’s expo, “get there early because they can only take so many.”

This will be on a first come first serve basis and the service ranges from inflating tires to adjusting the brakes. “There’s no better way to get your bike ready for spring weather,” said senior Matt Lalonde.

Taking a bike ride is one way to get rid of some stress, but there are other ways to relax. Returning to the expo this year will be massage tables offering information on types of massages and how they help.

“There really is something for everyone at the Expo and a lot of Illinois Wesleyan student organizations are being represented,” Miya Thalmann, intern at the EAC and senior at IWU said.

“Actually, there are 95 exhibitors, 11 presenters, and a fashion show; too many things to name,” Missy Smock said.

Some exhibitors and presenters that might intrigue the IWU community are include IWU’s own Habitat for Humanity, Student Nursing Association and the Sierra Student Coalition. In addition, other presenters will visit from Peace Core, the Tool Library and Paw to Paw.