Free Christmas tree recycling at 13 sites Jan. 1-15
Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful (KNIB) hosts its 25th Annual Christmas Tree Recycling program Jan. 1-15, 2013.
“We are happy to have all 13 of our tree recycling drop-off sites available again this year,” said KNIB Executive Director Lori Gummow. “Christmas tree recycling is our longest-running program, and one of the most popular. The 13 drop-off sites throughout Winnebago County offer many convenient locations for area residents. We encourage everyone to bring their fresh-cut tree to be recycled after the holidays, and later to collect free pine mulch.”
Before bringing Christmas trees to a site, KNIB requests that all ornaments, wire, garland and stands be removed. Wrap trees to be transported in reusable bed sheets or blankets.
“Trees are put through large chippers that could be damaged by forgotten ornaments or lights,” Gummow said. “Crew members may also be harmed by foreign objects in the equipment. This is also why we cannot accept pine wreaths with metal frames. Flocked trees are not accepted because the white flocking material is not biodegradable.”
Mulch created as the trees are chipped is available at no charge to area residents; it is a durable ground cover that reduces weeds and retains moisture. Acid-loving plants benefit from the nutrients in the mulch.
“The pine mulch is available on a first-come, first-served basis,” Gummow said. “Residents need to bring their own shovel and containers. In its lifetime, the Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful’s Christmas Tree Recycling Program has yielded more than 1 million pounds of pine mulch from more than one-half million trees.”
Chipping schedules vary at the different locations, and availability is not guaranteed. The mulch must be off the ground by March 1. The unmanned drop-off sites are as follow:
• Don Schmid Youth Sports Center, Riverdahl Park off Sandy Hollow, Rockford;
• Blackhawk Park, 100 — 15th Ave., Rockford;
• Levings Lake, east entrance off Johnston Avenue, Rockford;
• Andrews Park, 800 N. Central Ave., Rockford;
• Gambino Park, Pepper Drive off North Alpine Road, Rockford;
• Alpine Park, 900 S. Alpine Road, Rockford;
• Martin Park, northeast lot, Park Ridge Road off Riverside Boulevard, Loves Park;
• Machesney Park Village Hall, 300 Machesney Road, Machesney Park, Ill.;
• Baumann Park, Cherry Valley (daylight hours only);
• Williams Tree Farm, 4661 Yale Bridge Road, Rockton, Ill.;
• Rockton Boat Ramp Parking Lot, off Hononegah Road across from the high school;
• Valley View Farms, 6440 Belvidere Road, Roscoe, Ill.; and
• Pecatonica Wetlands Forest Preserve, near picnic area, 4550 N. Pecatonica Road, Pecatonica, Ill.
“Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful recognizes the generosity of our sponsors for 2013,” Gummow said. “Their support allows us to provide this important recycling program.”
The 2013 Christmas Tree Recycling Program sponsors are the City of Rockford, the City of Loves Park, Harlem Township, Rockton Township, UPS, Village of Cherry Valley, Village of Machesney Park, Village of Pecatonica, Village of Rockton, Village of Roscoe, Lincoln Rent-All, Trans Environmental and Williams Tree Farm. In-kind and media sponsors are Rockford Park District, Valley View Farms, Comcast, The Rock River Times, WTVO Channel 17/FOX 39 and Winnebago County Forest Preserve District.
Since 1988, KNIB has engaged all elements of the community to enhance neighborhoods by reducing, reusing and recycling the world’s resources for future generations. For more about tree recycling or other programs of the environmental non-profit, or to register to volunteer, visit www.knib.org, www.facebook.com/KeepNorthernIllinoisBeautiful or call (815) 637-1343.
From the Dec. 26, 2012-Jan. 1, 2013, issue
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