1 Green Thing: Let’s talk trash and let’s talk recycling

By Jan Herbert
Rockford Park District

Whether you were “green” before the color was fashionable or whether you’re just ready to find the “shade” that works best for you, here’s information about doing just “one green thing.”

Four years ago, a small group of volunteers persuaded the Village of Rockton to compete in the America in Bloom contest. What ensued was nothing short of miraculous. Hundreds of volunteers from pre-school children to retirees got busy.

Weeds were pulled, purple and gold flowers planted, trees trimmed, sidewalks washed, and one member of the group saw the need and arranged to have a recycling bin placed to entice more residents to recycle.

That bin (actually, now a larger one) is still in place. This morning when I arrived to offload my recyclables, it was on a truck about to leave for dumping at the sorting location. The young man driving the Waste Management truck was kind enough to see my dilemma, get out, and take my materials, saying he would put them in the cab of the truck because the bin was full.

A huge smile appeared on my face. You know me; I love to talk about recycling. Following my explanation about what began as a little bitty effort, I just had to indicate how thrilled I was to know it was full every week. Much to my surprise, he told me our little effort to start a recycling program now means the bin is picked up three times per week. And this is no small bin!

So, next time you think a little bitty effort doesn’t matter, just think of that great big bin being filled three times per week.

A few members of that same volunteer group are still concentrating on trash and recycling at the Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful Annual Clean-up Day. Best of all, workers at that event say it is getting more and more difficult to find trash in Rockton. Well, now isn’t THAT something!

For more information, e-mail Jan Herbert at JanHerbert@RockfordParkdistrict.org.

From the June 22-28 issue

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