A cornerstone of our community is our commitment to sustainability, which is why Home ReSource and the City of Missoula lead the charge on the green scene each year, ensuring the festival is as climate friendly as possible. The Roots Team is committed to reducing the carbon footprint of our festival while improving the health of our community and planet. From expanding zero waste options, to sustainable commute options, to offsetting our musicians’ emissions, the 2023 River City Roots Festival is dedicated to responsibly throwing Missoula’s best party.

No doubt you’ll see our Green Team Zero Waste Ambassadors at the festival managing the “waste stream”. Last year our team diverted 65% of Roots Fest waste from the landfill – and most of this became compost! Thank them for their efforts, and you can join this team too – click here to volunteer for the Green Team.

Here are the many ways we’re greening the Roots Fest in 2023:

  • Single-use plastic straws: six years ago, we eliminated these at the festival! Wahoo!
  • Zero Waste Vendors: All food vendors are required to be part of our Zero Waste Vendor Program. All vendors will NOT use any plastic, single-use glass, or Styrofoam food service ware. All containers, drinks, and utensils are recyclable or compostable. If you stop by a vendor, thank them for their actions to go green.
  • All-In-One Recycling Stations with Composting. Three years ago, we expanded our Zero Waste Stations to include compost bins. These green bins—filled with food scraps, plates, utensils and more—end up at the City-owned Garden City Compost, hauled by our friends at Missoula Compost Collection. In addition to MCC’s compost bins, Republic Services provides All-In-One Recycling service. To help festival goers know what and how to discard, you’ll find Green Team volunteers acting as Zero Waste Ambassadors at many of these stations. You can recognize these ambassadors by their green Roots Fest shirts and their nifty trash pickers. Do give them a high five!
  • Stainless Steel Tumblers and Roots Fest Cups: By popular demand, the River City Roots Festival stainless steel tumblers are back this year, to be used and reused throughout the weekend and beyond. These tumblers tend to sell out fast, so snag one before they’re gone! To make sustainable sipping even better, if you bought a tumbler or plastic Roots Fest cup at festivals past, bring it to this year’s Roots for all your beverage needs.
  • Water Stations. If all you need is water (!) stop by one of the Culligan water stations and fill your reusable bottle or Festival cup with cool H20. Stay hydrated!
  • Bike Valet: In our opinion, biking to Roots demands VIP treatment! To that end, Missoula In Motion and Green Team volunteers will again offer a bicycle valet parking service. If you bike to the festival, simply ride up to the secured area located on the Higgins end of the Art Show and let our volunteers do the rest. The Bike Valet will be available from 6pm – 10:30pm both nights of the Festival. If you choose to use your own bike parking arrangements, please only lock up to designated bike racks to avoid chaining up to trees. By riding and parking your bike responsibly, you help reduce carbon emissions, improve traffic flow, and protect our urban forests.
  • Carbon Free Main Stage: Powering the world class musicians performing at the Roost Festival takes serious energy. Between fuel to get here and electricity to run speakers and lights, we leave a carbon footprint that contributes to climate change. We mitigate that contribution with the purchase of carbon credits, using Climate Smart’s “Footprint Fund” dedicated to reducing emissions in buildings in Missoula. That is why we proudly display the “Carbon Neutral” banner prominently on stage.

Have any other ideas for Greening the Roots Fest or working to make our community more sustainable? Stop by the Climate Smart Missoula table near the Main Street Parking garage and let us know, or join our efforts.

Thank you to the 2023 GREEN sponsors: Dorsey Whitney, Mountain Line, Republic Services, and WGM Group