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Past Newsletters from Green Drinks

Click on a newsletter or just scroll down to read them all:

November 2014
December 2013
January 2012
October 2011
December 2010
April 2010
January 2010
January 2009

 


Green Drinks News November 2014

Greetings Green Drinks Organisers Everywhere!

This year we have welcomed new Green Drinks cities in Azerbaijan, Spain, Brazil, Canada, Austria, Denmark, Uruguay, Argentina, Mexico, Korea, Montenegro, Albania, Norway, Sweden, Nepal, the Philippines, Mozambique, China and the Netherlands as well as the USA and UK … wow!

This wide variety of countries and cultures reminds me that one of the key purposes of Green Drinks is to be inclusive – open to all. I would like to encourage you to have a serious think about your own Green Drinks, and see if there is a segment of the sustainability community who could be made to feel more welcome – not all business people are rabid planet destroyers and to be avoided, and not all deep-greenies are hippy weirdos – just to give two ends of a perceived spectrum :-) … Green Drinks is open to all, and I see Green Drinks around the world who have quite naturally started out from a certain grouping, anything from an NGO or perhaps energy or building professionals, and I do hope that the net is getting spread wide enough to capture all the oddballs and interesting folk, at the same time not being too left-field to put off the business leaders, community members and even mayors that I know attend Green Drinks …

Plus of course, by widening your net you are also helping increase overall attendance, something that I know is dear to your hearts. Let me know how you get on.

I’ve also noticed a few interesting approaches:

In other news, I’ve made a revised FAQ for organisers, which includes tips from organisers around the world:  http://greendrinks.org/FAQ

I hope it’s useful, and if not, that you will tell me how to make it better!

 

Cheers,

/edwin

Edwin Datschefski

International Coordinator

Green Drinks

 

 

 



Green Drinks News December 2013

Greetings Green Drinks Organisers Everywhere!

This is Edwin wishing you a happy festive season and best wishes for 2014.

I'll keep this short as I know you're busy and I'm hoping for your thoughts on just one simple question:

          What's the one thing that has worked best for your Green Drinks this year?

Let me know and I'll share, in the next newsletter.

One thing is for sure. In the increasingly fragmented world of sustainability and environmental endeavours, the depth and quality of meeting people in person is so much better than any kind of online interaction. While we can now do google hangouts on our iWatches fundamentally I believe there will always be a place for small groups of people to have profoundly interesting and serendipitous informal meetings face to face, with something local and refreshing to hand, whether that is beer, tea or a shared meal.

Serendipity as you know means a "happy accident" finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it. For me it's a key part of the Green Drinks experience, to meet people who are doing things you weren't even aware existed yet are part of this sustainability journey we all share. Maybe you know something that will influence the entire future of Green Drinks -- what forms might it take, how it might adapt to each locality in an organic way, all whilst maintaining the principles of being agenda-free and self-organising.

Anyway, enough rambling from me, I hope your December Green Drinks goes/went well and thanks so much for all that you do, the world is a much better place as a result of all your hard work, and I hope it is beneficial for yourselves personally -- not just fun but also rewarding in terms of becoming better connected with your community.

Cheers!

/edwin

Edwin Datschefski

International Coordinator

Green Drinks

 

 

 


Green Drinks News January 2012

 
Happy New Year to you all!

I believe we are really entering a phase where there is a widespread desire amongst people to connect and act, and that Green Drinks is a particularly valuable resource because it is agenda-free and inclusively welcoming. The environment sector has always been very fragmented, with thousands of different groups and issues, and an overwhelming amount of data and complexity. So the random coming-together of people can actually be a very effective way for people to reach into the topic and to use the magic of face-to-face discussion and networking to connect and be inspired.

As always, please let me know any cool ideas for how to make Green Drinks even more successful. Let's make 2012 another great year ...
 
Cheers!      Edwin Datschefski,  Green Drinks International

Making a Real Difference

It's always hard to quantify what direct benefits Green Drinks brings, but we all know it is a force for the good. So it's lovely to hear about the tangible effects.


For example, Trish Riley in Gainesville writes, "Thanks for the interesting news! I should write up something for you about our Green Drinks Gainesville.... we've spawned a lot of very interesting green activities! I had the local Environmental Protection director speak about a downtown superfund site, and some members of the audience, who didn't previously know about the site, organized a citizen's action group and got a $50K grant from the USEPA to help keep folks informed! Also, the idea for my Cinema Verde Environmental Film and Arts Festival was born at a Green Drinks meeting, and now i'm working on my third festival! Our town loves green drinks - we co-hosted with a local business innovation group last month and had 125-150 people there! Thanks for getting us going with your great idea! "

Great Minds Think Differently

I have a look at the Logos Page the other day -- wow! What an amazingly creative bunch of GD Organisers you are! They are professional-looking, witty, picturesque and locally-relevant. Just what I had in mind when we decided GD should be as logo-less as possible centrally and let each city develop their own identity ...  http://www.greendrinks.org/Logos

MadMimi in Metuchen

Joe Schaffer writes, "Great Newsletter!  I do have to throw in a plug for MadMimi, which is similar to (maybe cheaper than) MailChimp but has a great affiliate feature.  For-profit businesses in town support Metuchen GreenDrinks through this program, which credits our account and let's us operate our newsletter basically for free so we don't have to levy a cover charge for our events."

GLT

Brighton West of Portland Green Drinks writes: "Edwin - I love this newsletter.  I'm wondering if you can tell me (or share in the next newsletter) the story of how Green Drinks started.  I've heard it and try to tell it, but I never remember the name of the pub (so I call it "something like lettuce and tomato."). The real name would be nice."

Thanks Brighton! I think L&T is funnier but the actual pub was The Slug and Lettuce in Islington. You can read the whole story here: http://www.greendrinks.org/Press

 

Some Tips from Washington State

Jaime Forsyth of Bremerton GreenDrinks gives us a nice overview of how their Green Drinks has been doing:

"In Bremerton, where we're getting close to our 4th anniversary, and we have a different local business host each month.  For $10, they get unlimited beer, wine and small plate/appetizer food made by a local caterer or the restaurant, if that's where it's being held.  We get beer and wine glasses donated, and wine and food subsidized by the $10.  We try and have a 10 minute speaker with a sustainability-related topic.  We average about 70+ people but we've had well over 100.  We provide professional-looking name tags for each of guests, who appreciated that small gesture of recognition and we are proactive in encouraging people to meet at least 3 new people each time.  For some reason, some people need that extra push to either give themselves 'permission' to go up to a stranger, or to remind themselves to not just hang out with their buddies."

"Some of the places we've held it:  Libraries, art galleries, historic Navy destroyer, marina breakwater (with yacht rides), two adjoining harborside penthouses, LEED Platinum office building, college campus, greenhouse, Naval Museum, rooftop of a historic building, historic Admiral Theater, a nursery (with plants, not kids), and the 3rd story deck of our local credit union, where the CEO reviewed every aspect of the credit union and rated it on how sustainable it was.   The mayor and local elected officials are all regular attendees."

I wholeheartely agree about people needing a little extra push to break from their normal group and talk to new people -- but that's what Green Drinks is all about, so any more tips on this are more than welcome.

Plug In To The Future

It's a sign of better times that several Green Drinks have demonstrated actual, working, electric vehicles ... Like the Chevy Volt on display at one of Northwest Suburban, Illinois' Green Drinks.


'Exotic' Locations

Of course, where you happen to live is not exotic to you, but many of us love to hear about new Green Drinks being set up in far-flung places around the globe. For example, we have recently welcomed:

    Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia                            Erüül mendiin tölöö

    Guadalajara, Mexico                               ¡Salud!

    Baku, Azerbaijan                                     Afiyët oslun!


Video from Boca Raton

Quite different from most Green Drinks, this special Gala event in Boca Raton was a very classy do indeed ... Thanks for the link, Marci!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYsHR4v54oQ

Happy 2nd Birthday, Kiev!

Iryna Myronova celebrated 2 years of GD in the Ukranian capital, and I sent a little speech to be read out -- I wish I could go to all the Green Drinks in the world one day! Building on her success in Kyiv, Iryna is also running a Green Drink in Lviv. She says, "What I like about green drinks is the sense of a larger international community of like-minded people."

Junk Mail

Of course if you have an email listed on a web page then you have to expect some spam. That is why it's a good trick to list yourself at name [at] domain [dot] org as people can then type in the correct address and reach you OK, but auto-spammers don't see it as an email address and don't harvest it.

Be aware that there is another trend in that a few people have been manually harvesting some of your contact emails and sending you a promo email that makes heavy mention of Green Drinks. I just wanted to clarify that I nor Green Drinks have endorsed these communications, and would not do so in any case.

Video-tastic!

Finally, Joel Barrett and Mike Keen of South Bend, Indiana Green Drinks have made a really fun video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WfqCMmvLd8

 


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

That's all for now.
 
 
Happy Green Drinking!
 
 
Edwin Datschefski
Founder and International Coordinator
Green Drinks


Green Drinks News October 2011

Hello Green Drinks Organisers everywhere!
 
This year has seen a whole range of interesting new variations on the usual Green Drinks theme:
 

Smile, You're On Mass TV!

Sean Jeffords, Coordinator of Green Drinks Northampton and John Kontekakis, Coordinator of Green Drinks Springfield were featured together on the Mass Appeal TV show -- they both did a great interview, well done, guys! See it here


Trips and Visits

In the UK, Green Drinks Leeds have started doing occasional trips and visits -- they visited the infamous Drax Power station last month for example -- a nice way to expand horizons and see fellow Green Drinkers outside their natural habitats ... http://greendrinksleeds.wordpress.com/2011/08/30/review-of-green-drinks-leeds-visit-to-drax-by-virginie-lenfant
 

Swaps and Picnics

Laura Sauermilch and Terra Heilman of Vancouver Green Drinks  ran a swap system in August where they asked Green Drinkers, 'Are you always up for a good swap? Bring your unwanted clothing and household items this Tuesday and go home with some new treasures/wardrobe items.' They ran their session at the Habitat for Humanity Store, and interestingly also had this session as alcohol-free, which makes for a nice change ...
 
The ever-innovative Laura and Terra also held a Green Drinks Picnic in June, a self-catering/potluck style event which people found to be a good excuse to show off homemade and locally grown goodies ...
 

Do you Boda Boda?

Kampala Green Drinks in Uganda win the prize for the coolest venue name -- Bubbles O'Leary in Acacia Avenue ... they also suggest getting there by boda boda (taxi bicycle or scooter) or matatu (colourfully-painted minibuses) ...       
 

Get Your Hands Dirty ...

Warrenton Green Drinks also got out and about this summer -- getting their hands dirty at the Fauquier Education Farm, helping out by weeding rows, picking produce and possibly doing some light planting of sunflower seeds as well -- a wonderful cause; the farm supports the community by donating produce to the local food banks.
 

Joint Events

Two of the California Green Drinks, Pacific Beach and San Diego, are getting together in November for a joint session -- they expect a bigger turnout than normal, and it sounds like a nice way to get to know other Green Drinkers and fellow GD organisers in your locality.
 

Fish and Sips

In Malta, Natalie DeBono ran a wonderfully cool session at the beach -- Fish ‘n’ Sips -- to celebrate Green Drinks Malta's 5th Anniversary. With snorkelling lessons, sustainable fish recipes and presentations on sustainable and traditional fishing methods, I was tempted to swim over all the way from England! www.greendrinksmalta.org


Ukrainianisation!

With the translation help of Iryna Myronova, I made the webpage navigation for The Ukraine into Ukranian, as well as the Green Drinks Code.


I'm happy to set up menus and the Code in your language, just get in touch and I'll send you what needs to be translated. I've recently done the China and Germany pages in this way ...
 

Chimp-tastic!

Iryna has also found that organising GD in Kyiv and Lviv is made easier with www.mailchimp.com  She says 'I really like the mailchimp. We are well within their free limit of 3000 participants and 6000 letters per month. It's kind of mini CRM system, so I can send different letters to different groups (students, NGO, business, newcomers....) and check the reaction (opened, bounced, clicking links). Yes, I would definitely recommend it.'

On the strength of that, I have tried it for this very newsletter, and I can confirm it does a very professional job!
 

City of Angels ...

In Los Angeles, they had a great year, if their successes in 2010 are anything to go by:
 They Raised over $1,000 for Global Green relief efforts in Haiti.
 Raised over $500 for Art from the Ashes to rebuild Duekmejian Park which was ravaged by the station fires
 Supported over 35 different green businesses and events (Thank to them for hosting!)
 Welcomed over 500 new greendrinkers to LA
 

Catch the G-Train ...

Somehow I missed out on reporting this last year, but Santa Fe held their June Green Drinks on a train! The president of the railway company shared the history and current challenges of keeping the train on the rails and her green solution for developing biodiesel rail freight in Santa Fe and serving the larger Northern New Mexico region. It sounds like a great way to see the scenery and as Santa Fe GD organiser Kathleen Chambers says, 'It's a green, hip networking event that is an authentic, irreplaceable link to our city's colorful past'.
 

Bring Your Grandma!

It's always good to get a fresh pair of eyes on your events, and to realise that what's become normal and unspoken for us still sometimes needs clarifying for newcomers.  Laurens Laudowicz brought his mum to Honolulu Green Drinks, and she had some insightful feedback that is well worth sharing with all organisers:
- she liked the free appetizers! (who would not?)
- she thought it was great that people got name tags, but she thought that it had to be made much more clear that ALL attendees write their company name, or field of business or at least their personal interest under the name!
- she felt the venue was much too loud and therefore did not encourage longer and more serious conversation and rather forced attendees to a rather short and superficial small talk.
- she thought having a raised stage was fantastic so everyone could see the speakers.
- she thought it was great that the venue was centrally located and therefore easy to reach via bus, etc. and also that the venue had plenty of parking.
- she was missing that there was not much of a structure or an introduction as to what green drinks is all about when she first entered the venue. she would have like to be greeted and maybe given a short and compact flyer that gives the bullet points of the type of event even some info on what was going to happen now that she is here.
 

That's all for now.
 
 
Happy Green Drinking!
 
 
Edwin Datschefski
Founder and International Coordinator
Green Drinks

 

 

 


Green Drinks News December 2010

Hello Green Drinks Organisers everywhere!
Hope you've all had a super 2010 and are enjoying a Solstice or Holiday break! I have a few news items for you:

More Attendance!

I think the main thing all Green Drinks organisers want to know is -- How to get better attendance? This means more people of course (though sometimes 30 people is just the right number, and at the other end of the spectrum the big cities are getting 100, 200, 300 and up!), but also more of the kind of people that especially make Green Drinks work so well -- quality as well as quantity (while still being open to all of course!).
There are some tips of course on the Tips FAQ which you'll find when you log in to your admin page on www.greendrinks.org but these haven't been changed in a while. So I thought it would be a good time, just after what may have been your biggest Green Drinks of the year, to pool all our ideas for getting better attendance.
So please ... let's hear your great tips ... use the Add News & Tips button to jot down a few ideas that could help other organisers achieve the success they are hoping for! Let's see what we can come up with! Thanks!

How to Hand Over to Another Organiser

Often people email me to say they are moving on (and often they start another Green Drinks in their new location!) and while I am always happy to hear your news, the admin can be completely handled by yourself:

    Just log in as normal and edit 'Your Details' to change the login, password, contact name and email to whomever you choose. Then send them their new details so they can log in and update everything.
    Alternatively, log in as normal and click 'Deactivate' to take your page off. Then ask the new organiser to set up their own new page at http://www.greendrinks.org/starting.htm

Easy!


Emailing Edwin and Mentors

OK, I know I'm not always the speediest respondent to email queries -- I only get a a short time each week to coordinate Green Drinks worldwide. What normally happens is you'll either get a quick reply, or your email will end up in the big pile and take a week or two. If you need a response before I can back get to you, then please try asking your mentor as well.
"Mentor? What mentor?" I hear you say  -- well just login as normal and click the 'Find Mentor' button and you can choose some local or amenable-looking person from a list of great Green Drinks organisers who know the ropes and are willing to help and don't bite! They'll be happy to guide you and don't be shy about trying a couple of them as they are all busy people too ...
New mentors are always welcome BTW, so if you want to help, you can sign up using the 'Mentor Status' button ...

Growth in 2010

We've have 231 new cities join since the last newsletter in January, that's similar to last year, so our rate of increase is slowing but that's still a lot of growth!

Creation of New Green Drinks Cities:

    2006    44
    2007    85
    2008    115
    2009    226
    2010    231

Growth has been completely organic so far, any ideas on how to make it continue to spread?

Dormant Sweep

There are still a few dormant cities, and my regular sweep will be taking place soon, so please make sure you have logged in and updated your page
    Login: http://www.greendrinks.org/Admin%20Login2
-- and I have improved the password reminder page to make it even easier if you have forgetten your login:
    Lost Password?: http://greendrinks.org/lostpwd.php
Any pages that have not been updated in the last 6 months will get on the list to be removed!


That's all for now.
Happy Green Drinking!
Edwin Datschefski
Founder and International Coordinator
Green Drinks


Green Drinks News April 2010


Hello Green Drinks Organisers everywhere!
The big news is:
Green Drinks Organizers Meeting, May 20-21, Chicago!
Building on the success of the first such gathering (Seattle, Sept. 2009), Green Drinks organizers from across the country and world are invited to Chicago to share resources, discuss challenges and opportunities, and form mutually beneficial connections to take their events to the next level.

Attendance at the 1.5 day event is open to organizers of Green Drinks of any size and location.

There is cost to register, only a nominal fee to cover two meals that will be provided.

Complete information:

        http://foresightdesign.org/greendrinks/may2010

Please help spread the word and forward this to other Green Drinks organizers you know!

Peter Nicholson

(Foresight Design Initiative & Chicago Green Drinks)

P.S. For those who may be interested, the big Chicago Green Festival is scheduled for May 22-23. See: www.greenfestivals.org

P.P.S. Any logistical questions that can't be answered by the web page can be directed to Kari McLennan, our amazing volunteer event coordinator, kari.mclennan@gmail.com


Deals on Eco Clothes, Jewelry and Body Care

In these credit crunch times it's nice to see Green Drinkers being resourceful. Eric Routenberg of Green Drinks Mason has kindly worked out a deal with a firm in Canada to give us a discount on the pricing of any of the goods they find on their Eco-gear site www.eco-gear.ca
After making your choice of items, type the word 'greendrinks', all as one word, into the discount space and you will see the discount applied.
They can also set you up with a deal where you get a discount code for your own Green Drinks, so your members are able to purchase any of the items in their shop at a discounted price PLUS all purchases will earn your group a percentage of the net sale.
Thanks, Eric!
Any other deals or fundraising tips like this, please post them on the 'News and Tips' page or email Edwin with them for the next edition of this newsletter.

Handovers and Your Email

To be taken off this mailing list, or to change the email these get sent to, please log in and amend 'Your Details'.
You can have more than one person by using commas like this:
    fred@timbuktugreendrinks.org, nancy@timbuktugreendrinks.org
It's also a great way to hand over to a new organiser -- just give them your login and they then update their details. They can amend the login and password how they like.
Alternatively, just click the 'Deactivate' button on the admin page, and your page will no longer be seen. Then the new organiser can set up their own page and login using the secret link.

 

Spring is Here!

The long-awaited sun and warmth (at least here in England) makes me think of outdoor Green Drinks -- at the London GD in the summer we used to have a little outdoor annex GD in the nearby park for those who wanted to sit under a tree and connect with nature. I know Victoria, BC also run an annual GD outside the city and outdoors -- people get there by foot, bike, canoe or any other non-fossil means ...
Maybe now's the time to have think about a fun event for the summer for your Green Drinks!

That's all for now.
Cheers,
Edwin Datschefski
Founder and International Coordinator
Green Drinks

 


Green Drinks News January 2010


Hello Green Drinks Organisers everywhere!
Hope you're all having a great 2010! I have a few news items for you:


New URLs!

Over Christmas I got round to some programming and with a fairly major rewrite we now have 'clean URLs' which means much better SEO and google presence and a bunch of other geeky stuff behind the scenes. The main upshot for you folks is a much simpler way to link to your page, eg:
    http://www.greendrinks.org/London
If you are in the USA or Canada, you'll also need to add your state as a two-letter code, eg:
    http://www.greendrinks.org/WA/Seattle
The old way of linking should still work, but please check and update any links you have from other sites that link to greendrinks.org.

Green Drinks in Different Languages

I just put French and German navigation menus on greendrinks.org, and of course now I realise that the basics (main intro page, and start a new city page) also need to be in French or German too -- any takers to do a quick translation? Other languages welcome too ...

Structures, Incorporations

I've had a few queries recently about how to receive sponsorship money -- in most cases sponsorship is 'in kind', in the form of printing or provision of a venue or food etc. Where it is a financial payment the organiser puts the money in their bank account and then spends it on something Green Drinks-related. When there is a more than a few dollars involved, or there are several people organising the Green Drinks, then they may set up a separate bank account to keep things transparent. In situations with large Green Drinks (150+ attendees for example) then it may make sense to incorporate as a non-profit limited liability company. Another, more common approach is to make the Green Drinks a project of a larger host organisation like an environmental group (NGO).


Visit Green Drinks when you travel

I'm often suprised to hear that people have visited another city or country and not checked out the local Green Drinks there -- go! It is like a worldwide newtwork of cool people, you will usually get VIP treament as a visiting guest and you get to hear all the local gossip too ...

 


Green Drinks News Year End 2008


Hello Green Drinks Organisers everywhere!
 
Happy Year-End Celebrations to you all, here's hoping your had a great year in 2008 and best wishes for Green Drinking in 2009.
 
I have a few news items for you:

The Green Drinks Code

This important text encapsulates everything Green Drinks is about in terms of code of conduct (how people should behave) and genetic code (the DNA of how Green Drinks operates and spreads):
 
 See http://greendrinks.org/index.php?city=Start
 
Please have a good look at it -- there should be no surprises in there. I would like all cities to comply with this code and I'm sure everyone does already -- it's simply formalising the spirit of Green Drinks so it's clear to newcomers as we continue to expand.

 

150 New Cities!

 

Welcome all our new cities -- we've had over 150 new cities join us this year, welcome to all!
 

Green Drinks in Different Languages

I just put French and German navigation menus on greendrinks.org, and of course now I realise that the basics (main intro page, and start a new city page) also need to be in French or German too -- any takers to do a quick translation? Other languages welcome too ...

 

Update Your Page or be Deleted!

 

I have sent a reminder to the cities that have not updated their page for a year or so -- I have to do this to weed out the dormant cities and this occasionally resparks some of them. Even if you have a fixed date rule or link to your own pages, it's important to refresh your pages regularly so that people can be confident in devoting an evening to Green Drinks.


Password Reminders and Contact Details

If you have forgotten your password, then there is now a handy password retrieval system on the login page. There's also a new facility to change your contact details and password.

 
/edwin
 
Edwin Datschefski
International Coordinator
Green Drinks