Bright Beat recently spearheaded the achievement of Zero Waste at Good Food EXPOChicago Community Climate ForumHopStop Craft Beer Festival and MLS All-Star Game Pep Rally, and brought Zero Waste ‘cheers’ to Goose Island Block Party and New Belgium’s Chicago editions of Tour de Fat and Clips Beer & Film Tour.

Through Bright Beat’s solutions-based consulting practice, we identify opportunities, set goals, measure and manage strategic success. Our multi-level approach to sustainability helps foster and promote change in consciousness and behavior, while reducing costs and conserving natural resources. Bright Beat has built customized solutions for municipalities, corporations, stadiums, special events, food purveyors, beer makers, charities, conferences, and more. Our advocacy work on a city and state level focuses on public-private sector collaboration and building stronger communities.

Our music + media work includes strategic partnerships, artist and concert promotions, event publicity, digital rebranding, and more. Merging our passion for music and community with our sustainability expertise, Bright Beat has implemented large-scale solutions at events including Electric Forest, the Grateful Dead Fare Thee Well shows at Soldier Field, Chicago Jazz Fest, Milwaukee Summerfest and venues like Allstate Arena and Brooklyn Bowl. We provide customized solutions to industry leaders exploring their environmental commitment and resilience along with developing an audience of changemakers.


ELECTRIC FOREST- Growing mindfulness of our footprints in the Forest

  • By driving awareness, connecting the dots and proposing new efforts, Bright Beat was able to grow social and environmental initiatives of festival vendors, community non-profits, visual artists and event production entities.Resource Recovery
    • Over 90 tons of mixed recycling, metal, cardboard, grease and wood was collected and recycled.
    • Over 34 tons of organic material collected for composting, enriching Michigan soil and fueling the local food shed.

    Supporting the Community

    • Over 7 tons of perishable food was donated to Teen Challenge of Western Michigan, a foundation helping people become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, socially adjusted, physically well, and spiritually alive.
    • Over 1,600 pounds of creative materials donated a Whitehall High School theater department for reuse.

    Production Efficiency

    • Secured a compostable serveware partnership which streamlined procurement, reduced contamination and increased program credibility, leading to 4,637% growth in organic material recovered.
    • Designated areas for forest artist material reuse / swap / recycle, allowing for greater sharing of resources, prompting more creativity and reducing waste from the landfill.


  • Recovering resources through recycling, with a priority on capturing food scraps and other plant-based items to be composted locally — enriching local soil and strengthening the local food shed — and food recovery to feed community members in need.
  • Nearly 2.5 were diverted from the landfill via recycling, composting, food recovery and donation, resulting in 90% of material generated from the event, thus achieving  Zero Waste! View photos here.
  • Educated countless attendees on environmental sustainability in their daily lives and in our food system.


  • Aligning with the Forum’s focus on climate, community and action, the host and event planning teams partnered with Bright Beat to prioritize resource management efforts.
  • Over 95% of material generated at the Forum was diverted from the landfill through reuse/recovery, recycling, and composting, achieving Zero Waste.
  • It was a true team effort as Eco Educators, catering team members, Field Museum staff and event planning leads all played an important role in this successful Zero Waste initiative.


  • Supported sample collection and direct waste analysis for a Chicago capture rate study of 144 households over 4 days, after targeted recycling education and outreach.
  • Direct waste analysis of 49 material categories, involved sorting, weighing and tracking materials.
  • Sourced supplemental team members from a local social enterprise, providing work, experience in resource recovery, and support of a platform that helps individuals build the skills to secure lasting careers.


  • This comprehensive resource recovery and creative reuse program resulted in 98% landfill division. Disposable materials generated at the event were recycled or composted, and reusable items were donated to local charities.
  • The pep rally highlighted the large, often hidden amount of creative materials events generate that can be donated locally and recovered responsibly.
  • This exciting and successful Zero Waste event would not have been possible without the efforts and dedication of our Eco Educator Team. View photos here.


  • Guiding sustainability messaging and activating resource recovery onsite, we helped Frontera’s 30th recover over 430 pounds of material, from guest’s bamboo serveware to surplus food. View photos here.


  • Coordinated resource recovery event programming and Eco Education engagement efforts for the annual craft beer fundraiser in Riverside, Illinois.
  • Diverted 95% of waste from the landfill via recycling and composting, resulting in a Zero Waste event for the second year in a row. View photos here.


    Green Music Fest:

    • Sustainability Strategy: Setting the bar for responsible event production in Chicago through Eco Education, a comprehensive waste diversion program, people-powered bike stage, community partnerships, vendor sustainability requirements and more.
    • Over 11 TONS of recyclables and compostables diverted from landfills 2012-2017.
    • Provided a team of Eco Educators to inform attendees of many ways to incorporate sustainability into their lives and properly dispose of their recyclable and compostable items.
    • Sourcing reusable stainless steel cups in 2017 reduced cup waste by over 50% compared to the 2016 event!
    • Awarded Highly Commended by A Greener Festival Award in 2016.
    • FestForums award-winner, 2016 Best of the Fest: Music Festival Sustainability.
    • Highlights video: Green Music Fest… the greener, the better!
    • 2016 Sustainability Recap

    Wicker Park Fest:

    • Sustainability Strategy: Researched, developed and delivered multiple customized solutions to recycle various types of beer & wine cups.
    • Provided a staff of Eco Educators to inform attendees of many ways to incorporate sustainability into their lives and properly dispose of their recyclable and compostable items.
    • Nearly 10 tons of recyclable and compostable materials diverted from landfills 2012-2014.
    • Recipient of Highly Commended by A Greener Festival Award in 2016.
    • Highlights video: Eco Educators PUT IT IN THE DUMPSTER

    VERTEX: Inaugural festival prioritizing community partnerships + sustainability

  • Building the foundation for a successful, engaging and community-minded sustainability program, we established connections and identified opportunities for greater positive impact. Our 2016 Highlights include:
  • Over 4,800 pounds of food scraps were collected for composting and 2 Tons of aluminum and cardboard were recycled locally.
  • Over 4,200 pounds of perishable and non-perishable food, goods, tools and furniture and supported community members and benefitted local non-profits.


  • Managing Zero Waste efforts for attendees consistently concerned and considerate of their environmental impact.
  • We achieved 91% landfill diversion at Clips & 90% diversion at Tour De Fat, with help from our Eco Educators, New Belgium Brewing, Resource Center and the great staff and volunteers at West Town Bikes.

  • GOOSE ISLAND 312 URBAN BLOCK PARTY - Make Beer, Not Waste

  • Developed event sustainability to move closer to matching the optimal efficiency and 99% waste diversion efforts of their brewery.
  • We achieved 95% DIVERSION from landfill, highlighted by WGN-TV Chicago.
  • Get the scoop on the Block Party’s Zero Waste success story and Bright Beat’s leadership straight from Goose Island in their blog post.


  • Record-breaking attendance and beverage sales, coupled with Bright Beat expertise, netted 49% of waste diverted from the landfill.
  • Event diversion rate was 150% greater than the stadium’s annual diversion rate of 19%.
  • Learn more about Bright Beat’s behind-the-scenes work in this backstage interview.

  • ZIPCAR Bike To Work Party at WHOLE FOODS

  • Zipcar “Rocked the Rooftop” with an end of Bike to Work Week celebration to benefit Active Transport Alliance.
  • Eco Educators guided attendees to keep waste streams clean and educated on many ways to incorporate sustainability into their lives.
  • We achieved 84% landfill diversion and influenced many, despite food packaging challenges.

  • FARM AID 30: A Legacy of Sustainability

  • Assessed and supported zero waste efforts
  • Provided event coverage for a national magazine, highlighting resources and initiatives in social and agricultural sustainability.


  • In 2015 more than 800 industry stakeholders gathered in Chicago to learn and share best practices and the latest innovations in greening operations, advancing the supply chain and engaging fans.
  • Sustainability Strategy: Bright Beat worked with Soldier Field Operations/SMG to target zero waste, with Eco Educators guiding guests on waste diversion and informing about sustainability initiatives in Chicago.


  • Sustainability Strategy: Consulted on zero-waste event programming, supported event logistics, set-up, and Green Team management.
  • Coordinated plant-based ‘plastic’ cup collection and recycling efforts at an event’s post-race party.

  • ALLSTATE ARENA “Green For A Reason” Program:

    Developed and managed a comprehensive recycling program, environmentally preferable purchasing policy and energy efficiency upgrade at this 19,000 capacity Chicago area sports & entertainment facility.

  • Over 468 TONS of recyclables diverted from landfill and thousands of dollars saved since 2010.
  • Awarded the 2011 U.S. EPA WasteWise Gold Achievement Award for Public Venue Recycling
  • Successfully wrote and was awarded energy efficiency grants
  • Built first sustainability sponsorship
  • Attracted media coverage, see PRESS
  • Persistent rallying of industry partners and peers to promote economically and environmentally sustainable changes to existing standards.
  • Services Overview & Case Study

  • MB FINANCIAL PARK “Green For A Reason” Program:

  • Developed and managed the waste diversion program for a 200,000 square foot entertainment complex – with 6 restaurants, a bowling lounge and comedy club.
  • Partnered with facility and tenant management to implement environmentally-sustainable business practices.
  • Advised on “green” procurement, public recycling program and outreach.
  • Applied for and was awarded the US EPA Food Recovery Challenge 2015 Narrative Award for Leadership for our 2015 sustainability strategy that helped 1,000 employees and 1.6 million visitors keep food recovery and waste diversion top of mind and properly executed, resulting in the recovery of more than 150 tons of organics.
  • MB Financial Park’s “Green For A Reason” Program earned both State and Federal awards in 2014: the 2014 Illinois Governor’s Sustainability Award Honorable Mention and the 2014 U.S. EPA Food Recovery Challenge Award for food waste reduction.


  • Managed festival sponsorships and verified cup recycling initiatives
  • Managed launch of cup recycling partnership with TerraCycle
  • Strategic advisory, development and analysis of festival recycling programs, e.g.
  • Summerfest, Custer’s Last StandLake Forest Festival & Fireworks

    Other current and former clients include:


    Chicago Sustainability Task Force

  • The Chicago Sustainability Task Force is a consortium of large facility operators, event organizers and city-wide stakeholders, who are taking action to improve Chicago’s image and environmental initiatives by cataloging sustainability practices and policies, collaborating to influence and strengthen local ’sustainability’ infrastructure, and working towards consistent programs and messaging city-wide. Facilitated by Bright Beat, Chicago Sustainability Task Force members include the Chicago Department of Aviation, Cook County Sheriff’s Office, Goose Island Beer Company, Soldier Field, University of Illinois at Chicago, McCormick Place,  United Airlines and more.
  • Illinois Food Scrap Coalition

  • The Illinois Food Scrap Coalition (IFSC) is a group of solid waste agencies, counties, community and government organizations, businesses, schools, institutions, service providers, and processors dedicated to advancing food scrap composting in Illinois through program implementation, policy, and advocacy. Stephanie Katsaros is on the IFSC Board of Directors, and chairs the Communications and Outreach Committee.

    iHeartMedia Chicago

  • iHeartMedia Chicago’s Local Advisory Board is comprised of executives and leaders in the community, government and education system who help guide iHeartMedia Chicago’s partnership with community organizations, and help tackle the most pressing issues affecting the Chicagoland community. Stephanie Katsaros has been a member of the Local Advisory Board since 2010. Past and current partners include: Foundations of Music, Greater Chicago Food Depository, A Safe Haven Foundation, Special Olympics Illinois, Alzheimer’s Association – Greater Illinois Chapter, Back on My Feet Chicago, Chicago Public Library Foundation, DuSable Museum of African American History, City Year Chicago, John G. Shedd Aquarium and After School Matters.
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