Maggie’s Compost Post
Ever wonder how REVERB composts on tour when venues don’t have compost available? We rely on our amazing local volunteers, of course! Learn how our ROCKSTAR Volunteer Maggie from Michigan helped us out.
I am Maggie, an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys hiking, kayaking, playing sports, and traveling. In April 2019 I will graduate from Western Michigan University (WMU) with a major in Business Management and a minor in Nonprofit Leadership.
I have been volunteering with REVERB since February 2016 – my freshman year – while I was interning at the WMU Office for Sustainability. There was an email sent out to the “OfS” staff about a volunteer opportunity before a concert at the Kalamazoo State Theatre; Kacey Musgraves was coming to town and a nonprofit named REVERB was traveling with the band to make sure the tour was as green as possible. After checking out the REVERB website I knew I wanted to support their mission and goals. I ended up being the “Lead Volunteer” and had a great time engaging with fans to ‘Defend our Future.’
Since then I have volunteered with REVERB at NEEDTOBREATHE, John Mayer, Jack Johnson, P!nk, X Ambassadors, Maroon 5, and Fleetwood Mac. That totals 8 concerts in 2 states, 5 different cities, and 7 different venues!
“After checking out the REVERB website I knew I wanted to support their mission and goals.”
Currently, I live with four other students in the Gibbs House, a historic farmhouse built in 1853, which serves as a residential living area, learning laboratory, and a permaculture research / demonstration site. We serve in a fellowship program dedicated to permaculture and sustainability.
Just as REVERB is doing, the Gibbs House is building a robust community of diverse yet like-minded people who want to do good in the world. I can see a great crossover between the people I have met with REVERB and the Gibbs House folks. There are always good vibes, full hearts, and an unwavering amount of energy to improve the quality of life for all and better the future!
“It was a magical moment: barefoot, standing on top of our compost pile sprinkling food scraps into the earth that were touched by some legendary rockers!”
Recently, I volunteered to compost the food scraps from the Fleetwood Mac concert in my hometown of Grand Rapids as part of REVERB’s Farm-to-Stage program.
After the concert, my friend Paige and I maneuvered our car through the sea of concert-goers leaving the Van Andel Arena to meet Kris, REVERB’s on-site coordinator, for the curbside-compost pick-up.
We circled around the arena once and tried to stop in front but were quickly informed by a police officer that we could not stop. Apparently, the officer didn’t know we were innocent volunteers doing a key part of saving the planet (LOL)!
So, we drove around again and then Paige got out. She ventured down the street and met Kris on the sidewalk with the big, recycled cardboard box of compost. It fit nicely in my 1997 Park Avenue Buick and was driven back to the Gibbs House in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
One of my roommates, Andrew, helped me carry the big box from my trunk to our garden. I re-created the whole REVERB experience for him. We went to the compost pile and started singing ‘Don’t Dream It’s Over’ by Crowded House (Disclaimer: we sang the first verse, belted out the chorus on repeat and hummed the rest…but it still counts!). Then, like opening presents on Christmas morning, I started tearing open various bags of compost. It was a magical moment: barefoot, standing on top of our compost pile sprinkling food scraps into the earth that were touched by some legendary rockers!
One day soon those scraps, which would have just ended up in the trash, will turn into rich soil and help us continue to educate and engage even more college students and other community members about permaculture, farming and compost.
I am grateful to be a part of the work REVERB does to tackle environmental issues and support local nonprofit organizations. They make it easy and fun to get involved and continue to stay involved long-term. I am stoked for the next chance that comes my way to volunteer at a concert with REVERB!