A couple of green-minded additions are part of the 2013 Illinois State Fair.
“Our ladies at the Logan Correctional Center will be recycling all of the waste vegetable oil, cardboard, plastic, tin, and aluminum,” said Jen Aholt, chief executive of Illinois Correctional Industries. That’s an arm of state government which tries to put prisoners to work, possibly inspiring them to lead better lives after they get out. Aholt says men housed at the Menard Correctional Center already recycle at the Du Quoin State Fair, but this is her group’s first appearance at the fair in Springfield.
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Another kind of green is in the future for the broken-up parking lot known as Happy Hollow. “What we hope to do is to make it much greener,” said Joe Khayyat, executive director of the Illinois Green Industry Association, “to bring down a lot of plant material, a lot of trees, but also other elements of landscape design, like pavers and sitting walls, to make it more of a park-like setting.”
Khayyat’s group, formerly known as the Illinois Nurserymen’s Association, has brought a few ideas to share with fairgoers, who can add their own ideas to the eventual result.