As part of their overall goal of promoting environmental awareness and sustainability in the school, Green Team, sponsored by the non-profit organization of Safe Moves, hosted its first Anything But the Car Day Wednesday, October 30. That morning, Green Team club members stationed at five different entry locations on campus handed out a raffle ticket to any student who walked, biked, skateboarded or took the bus to school.
“The purpose of ABC Day is to motivate more high school students to take alternate forms of transportation…to school,” ABC Day co-commissioner junior Meredith Soward said. “If they see that biking, walking, skateboarding [and] taking the bus…can be easy and fun, then they might start making it a habit and help to reduce our school’s overall emissions.”
In total, Green Team handed out about 160 tickets. Students with a ticket had the opportunity to redeem it for some prizes in the quad during lunch.
“We gave smoothies made by a blender bike to anyone who had a raffle ticket, and then gave bike helmets and [a backpack] to a few select raffle winners,” Meredith said.
Ticketholders watched as their smoothies were made on the spot by a blender bike, which blends smoothies as riders sit on the bike and pedal. Safe Moves provided Green Team with the blender bike as well as the bike helmets and backpack. Both helmets and backpack were a change from last year’s raffle prizes.
“We’ve created bigger prize rewards—[that is] helmets and backpacks instead of $5 gift cards—and are trying to promote the event [even] more,” Meredith said. “We’re also working on creating a better prize system that will really motivate kids to change their ways.”
Another notable difference from last year is the name of the event.
“We held these events a few times last year, but under the name Carbon Free Commute Challenge or CFCC,” ABC Day co-commissioner junior Sruthi Jayakumar said. “We decided to change the name to Anything but the Car Day to make it easier for people to remember.”
Green Team plans to hold ABC days monthly and increase student participation by either holding class competitions or incorporating more activities during lunch.
“Right now, we are rewarding people who already use eco-friendly transportation,” Sruthi said. “Our goal is to involve more students and increase the number of people who are walking and biking to school.”