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Summer 2017 Newsletter

Solana Center newsletter header

Update from our Executive Director:

Did you make it to the San Diego County Fair? Solana Center staff created an engaging Reduce-Reuse-Recycle experience in the Infield Farm!

tree doors at the Eco Container

Our Eco Learning Lab and Infield Farm experience was made possible by the generous support of each our sponsors. Welcome to our new sponsors: Dr. Bronner’s, San Diego County Water Authority, and EDCO. And thank you to our returning sponsors: County Board of Supervisors, EcoScraps, Kashi, and Rain Water Solutions. In addition, ECOR donated all of our fantastic signage, which was printed on 100% recycled fiber boards made of spent coffee grounds, guitar wood scraps, and lavender plant waste. If you missed the Fair, you can still schedule a tour by e-mailing or attend a workshop at the Eco Learning Lab.

Also this summer, Kashi is introducing a new chewy granola bar, Chocolate Peanut Butter. Solana Center is proud to be featured on the back of the box! Click here to read the full story.


As always, we’ve been super busy this spring. Key programs include:panel with Eco Container sponsor logos

  • 23 presentations at schools and workshops around the County.
  • Completion of 2 Master Composter 5-week courses supported by the Cities of Encinitas and San Diego.
  • 10 Earth Day and community events.
  • Opening of the Mid-Scale Composting Demo Center.
  • Zero Waste consulting services at the Encinitas Street Fair, Hazard Center, Switchfoot/BroAm event, and the Community Resource Center, among others.
  • Creation of Food: Too Good to Waste community engagement program in Chula Vista.
  • Consulting for implementation of a scalable reusable food container cafeteria program.

Thank you to City of San Diego and the City of Encinitas for making all of our spring workshops and classes possible! If you would like to get involved, you can volunteer OR take a class OR become a sponsor!

Thank you for supporting Solana Center,




Eco Learning lab, with Eco Container, planting stations, and San Diego County Fair attendees

Expansion at the Fair

Solana Center's presence at the Del Mar Fairgrounds is larger than ever! Our expanded Eco Learning Lab now consists of the Eco Container, our Mid- Scale Compost Demonstration and Training Center, and hands-on composting demonstration bins of all shapes, sizes, and techniques.  



Upcoming Events

July 8:  All About Worms Workshop at the North Park Recreation Center

Vermicomposting (worm composting) is an environmentally-friendly way to turn your food waste into nutrient rich castings for your plants or garden beds. Learn all about how easy it is to compost your food waste with red wiggler worms at this interactive presentation.

hand holding worms and casting with text "all about worms vermicomposting workshop"

September 9:  Composting Workshop at the San Diego Zoo

October 28:  Composting & Bokashi Workshop at Tecolote Nature Center   

Volunteer Spotlight: Rebecca Willetts

volunteer Rebecca Willetts at Solana Center booth with childrenRebecca Willetts has been an all-star volunteer this year!  While Rebecca was in charge of her department's garden at work, she took the Master Composter course from Solana Center to add knowledge and professionalism to her role. As a volunteer, she loves the outreach possibilities - going out to all ages and events.  



children outside with worms and castings

Squiggling into Summer

Our temperate San Diego weather is usually prefect for accommodating the red wigglers used for vermicomposting. Their preference is for temperature ranges of 55 – 77° F, but they can tolerate temperatures above and below this range. Temperatures should be measured inside the bin since they can vary significantly from external measurements.




rain barrels outside at Solana Center

Solana Center Store Hours

We are currently open Tuesdays and Thursday from 8am to 4pm and Saturdays 8am-12pm. What hours are most convenient for you? Please let us know which hours fit your schedule



Toast to Compost 2017 tent at the Del Mar Fairgrounds Infield Farm

Toast to Compost

Our annual volunteer appreciation event, Toast to Compost, was held at the Infield Farm of the Del Mar Fairgrounds this year. More than 50 guests – Master Composters and volunteers who have dedicated over 20 hours of their time to our programs – enjoyed a golden sunset amid the picturesque Farm.

Toast to Compost 2017 sponsor logos




Farewell to Hannah!

Solana Center graduated intern Hannah​Hannah came to us through the internship program at Buena Vista High School. She has been with us for almost a year. Hannah will be attending UC Santa Barbara to study Communications in the fall. She attributes a large part of her admission to her work at Solana Center, where she received hands-on experience in communications, marketing, and nonprofit management.

She has expanded her knowledge of sustainability and hopes to spread her understanding to her fellow classmates in the future. Many thanks to Hannah for her hard work and dedication!

If you have attended a workshop, enjoy receiving this newsletter and support composting, recycling, food waste recovery and protection of our region's precious resources, please consider making a donation to support our environmental work in the community. Even the smallest donation makes a significant difference!


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Thank you to our donors:

Eco Learning Lab sponsors:

Eco Learning Lab in-kind donors:


This newsletter is possible through generous support from:

City of San Diego Environmental Services  City of Encinitas