You might have heard our theme this year is 'One Earth'... Well, what on earth is One Earth?

We know everyone will have a different vision for One Earth - but here's where we are coming from:

"We are all here on this 'one planet ' together with a shared future using the same finite resources, so let's work together and try and improve our environment and future together. Let's start thinking about new ways to live sustainably and harmoniously on our One Earth".

This year we're feeling extra ambitious! We promise to improve our carbon footprint by reducing, reusing and recycling as much as possible and we encourage you and all our traders, volunteers, guests and all stakeholders to follow suit and think about our impact over the weekend (and by extension in everyday life.)

We can Reduce our consumption:

e.g. buy a decent tent this year and look after it and take it home with you to use next year- and the years to follow!

We can Reuse where we can:

e.g. refill your reusable water bottle at the tap. This year NI Water and WaterAid will be giving away free reusable water bottles and providing a refilling station at the fest too. Our motto is REFILL NOT LANDFILL.

We can Recycle what we can't reuse:

This year there will be separate bins for cans and plastics and food waste so please help us and the environment at Tubby's Farm by sorting your waste into the appropriate bins.

We have been following these ideals with the festival and on the farm for many years now, as many of our Sunflowerfest friends know! Here's a quick breakdown in case you missed anything:

There are showers heated by the compost heap? Yes unbelievable but entirely true

The Welcome Arch, The Nuthatch, and the Enchanted Glade set features are made from winter prunings.

The Pond Stage, Campfire Stage, cocktail bars and baby-changing stations are made from sustainable pine logs from Jonesborough Castlewellan.

The Community Garden is inspired by the ideas of Bill Mollison and Permaculture.

To date, we have planted thousands of trees on the farm. The birdlife and wildlife are abundant and varied, and the farm is stunningly beautiful as a result. We have avoided the use of harmful artificial fertilisers and pesticides. We maintain our winter margins in our fields and plant native shrubs and flora to enrich the soil and provide much needed food and shelter for our wildlife and some of NI's most endangered species.

This year Sunflowerfest needs your help to make a difference, and we've made a handy, easy-to-use guide. You can help:

  • By separating and recycling and using the correct bins.
    NB Bags will be available at each recycling point, clear bags for recyclable waste and black bags for general waste. We encourage you to please help us to recycle as much as possible.
  • By keeping your campsite and festival site tidy.
  • By bringing reusable bottles/cups for water and coffee/tea.
  • By only bringing what you need and making sure everything you bring is either brought home or recycled.
  • By attending one of the talks on sustainability.
  • RE-FILL not LANDFILL. We encourage everyone, festival goers, artists and crew to bring their own refillable (reusable, non-glass) bottles to utilise the various water points dotted around the site and in the campsites. Some bottled water will be available but we will ensure it is sustainably sourced and bottled in NI.
  • WaterAid will be providing a water refilling station and distributing a limited number of refillable/reusable bottles.

Download your copy of the #SFF18 One Earth Festival Goers Guide now!

This year we are also actively participating in The Final Straw initiative and the Drastic on Plastic campaign to purge plastic straws from the festival and reduce single use plastics on site. Here are some of our additional promises to festival-goers this year:

  • We are introducing the green goblet cup deposit scheme at the bar.
  • All traders will be using compostable containers, cutlery, etc (i.e. no single use plastics).
  • No plastic bottled soft drinks will be sold on site, recyclable cans only.

Speaking to the festival's goals this year, festival-organiser Michael Magowan said:

"We're all on this planet together; regardless of boundaries and borders. So let's all pull together.

There is only a finite amount of resource for everyone on our One Earth. So let's take stock, learn to harness and use it sensibly. Let's share it fairly and use it sustainably. Let's improve our chances of preserving and improving our existence on our planet.

Regardless of race or creed or nationality, after nine years of Sunflowerfest I've learned we have a lot more binding us together than separating us. Let's get over the fear of change and embrace new ways of measuring success. New ways of regarding our lives and existence and new ways of validating ourselves."

Organisers are calling on dedicated festival-goers for help to make a difference. This year everyone will be encouraged to think consciously about "One Earth" and try and reduce their waste and to use receptacles provided to divide waste into recyclables, compostables and general waste.

Once again, festival organisers are putting the emphasis on world-building; an interactive, family-friendly celebration to unite our shared creative heritage. The festival offers an ambitious 7 stages of live music, arts workshops and showcases of the best in NI produce and talent – all while keeping a close check on our environmental impact.

ETHOS

Our ethos is one of positivity, inclusivity, encouragement, tolerance and an increased awareness of 'One Earth". At Sunflowerfest everyone's a VIP. Our goal is to provide, for anyone and everyone, the best festival experience we can; the best music, the best poetry, best theatre, best street-food, the funniest comedy with the best crowd of people in the country.

We are aiming to provide not only a world-class festival experience but also a platform for individuals to appreciate our shared 'roots' and, with a little creativity, to start thinking about new ways to live sustainably and harmoniously.

We aim to provide a family friendly, all inclusive, safe event for visitors; to promote awareness of, appreciation of, and participation in arts and culture throughout the community by offering a platform for local artists, performers and craftspeople.

As a festival community, we firmly believe in the inherent talents of all of our contributors, regardless of age, ethnicity, gender and ability.

REMEMBER...SUNFLOWERFEST IS GOOD FOR YOU!