Earth Day Dallas recently announced some ambitious plans to expand its impact statewide. The environmental event now has a new name — Earth Day Texas — and a new executive director, Michael Cain.
Earth Day Texas hopes to attract 60,000 participants to Fair Park for the event, which takes place April 26-27, 2014. Organizers have already begun to solicit business and community leaders and vendors from Houston, San Antonio and Austin for what they hope will become one of the biggest green festivals in the nation.
Cain is a Dallas native with an impressive list of accomplishments in the film and nonprofit space. He was the founding artistic director, CEO and chairman of the board of the Dallas International Film Festival. He also founded the Deep Ellum Film Festival and Arts Fighting Cancer. Most recently, he was executive producer for Jobs and remains president of his M3 Films company.
Cain, who admits that film turned him onto environmentalism in the ’70s, sees his appointment as an opportunity to take his passions to the next level.
“I got into film to change the world,” he told Green Source DFW. “Earth Day Texas is the perfect medium to affect the way people live, the way they think and work.”
In addition to new leadership, for the first time the green festival will have a central theme: water. That decision came on the heels of the November 5 election in which Texans overwhelmingly approved Proposition 6, which will take $2 billion from the state’s rainy day fund to help fund water projects throughout Texas.
“By passing Proposition 6, voters across the state have taken a stand and declared that our future water supply is an incredibly important issue to them,” said Earth Day Dallas founder Trammell S. Crow in a statement.
“We believe now is the perfect time to do more, to reach more people, with our message that everyone from big business to everyday family can lead the environmentally conscious lifestyle — especially when it comes to water conservation.”
“Everyone understands this is an issue in Texas,” added Cain. “The support of Proposition 6 is proof that people are aware that something has got to change.”
Programming and activities for Earth Day Texas will revolve around this critical theme. Planning is currently underway for the event, which will showcase environmental initiatives of business, nonprofits, schools and colleges, and governmental agencies, as well as provide family-friendly activities and hands-on workshops.