Recycle trees with Winnebago/Rockford Clean & Beautiful

StoryImage( ‘/Images/Story//Auto-img-113580135222659.jpg’, ‘Photo provided’, ‘Winnebago/Rockford Clean & Beautiful 2006 Christmas Tree Recycling Program: Lori Gummow (left) and Nicole Johnson with her nieces, Emily (age 9) and Lindsey (age 12) Johnson.’);

LOVES PARK—Each year, 35 million American families bring real Christmas trees into their homes, creating a warm and glowing part of their holiday celebration. After the Christmas season, as you’re putting away those holiday decorations for another year, do something with your holiday tree that will be good for our local environment—recycle it.

Winnebago/Rockford Clean & Beautiful offers 13 locations throughout Rockford and Winnebago County for families to recycle their holiday trees into wood mulch and keep them out of our landfills and roadside ditches.

The 18th Annual Christmas Tree Recycling Program serves more than 30,000 households each year as families drop off their trees from Jan. 1 through Jan. 15, 2006.

Winnebago/Rockford Clean & Beautiful Executive Director Lori Gummow stresses the importance of removing all decorations.

“Residents need to remove tree bags, wire, lights and ornaments before taking trees to a drop-off site,” she said. “Also, no tree stands or wreaths will be accepted. Because the trees are put through large chippers, anything left on the trees could damage the equipment or harm a crew member.”

Mulch will be available free to area residents as the trees are chipped at each location. Participating in the Christmas Tree Recycling program is a great way for your family to help make a difference, she said.

“Including your tree in our program is the best environmental choice you can make for this holiday season,” Gummow said.

Trees may be dropped off beginning Jan. 1 through Jan. 15 at the following locations:

Don Schmid Youth Sports Center at Riverdahl Park, Rockford

Blackhawk Park, 100 15th Ave., Rockford

Levings Lake, east entrance off Johnson Avenue, Rockford

Andrews Park, 800 N. Central Ave., Rockford

Gambino Park, River Lane off North Alpine Road, Rockford

Alpine Park, 900 S. Alpine Rd., Rockford

Martin Park, Park Ridge Road off Riverside Boulevard, Loves Park

Machesney Park Village Hall, 300 Machesney Rd.

Baumann Park, behind the maintenance building on South Walnut, Cherry Valley

Williams Tree Farm, 4661 Yale Bridge Rd., north Winnebago County

Rockton Boat Ramp Parking Lot, off Hononegah Road

Valley View Farms, 6440 Belvidere Rd., Roscoe

Westlake Village, next to boat launch at Smith Road

Local sponsors who have provided financial support or services for this 2005 project include: ComEd, City of Loves Park, City of Rockford, Woodward, William Charles Investments, Harlem Township, Rockton Township, Village of Cherry Valley, Village of Machesney Park, Village of Roscoe, Alliant Energy, Trans-Environmental, Village of Rockton, Williams Tree Farm, Lincoln Rental, Benny & Sons, Insight Communications, Rockford Park District, Rock River Disposal and Valley View Farms.

Real holiday trees are a recyclable and renewable resource. The trees, while growing, stabilize the soil, protect water supplies and provide refuge for wildlife. Also, 1 acre of growing holiday trees produces the daily oxygen needed for 18 people.

For more information about the 2006 Christmas Tree Recycling Program or other programs sponsored by Winnebago/Rockford Clean & Beautiful, call (815) 637-1343.

From the Dec. 28, 2005-Jan. 3, 2006, issue

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