By SHELLY HECKERT
Director, The KC Recycling Depot
Winter will end, I promise. The snow will melt and spring will pop out the other side. Except when the snow melts we are not left with daffodils and crocuses – we are left with piles of litter that have accumulated stuck on fences, in ditches, most everywhere you look. The litter won’t take care of itself and who has 500 years for it to decompose? Go litter busting!
From Saturday, April 11, until Friday, May 1, we are encouraging residents and groups to claim their territory. At the Depot, a map of Kosciusko County is ready to track groups that go out litter busting. Call us and let us know who is picking up litter and where you collected. To collect litter and to keep people safe the Depot has litter vests and bright orange bags to lend. Litter can be disposed of with your own trash or you can place it in the dumpster we have specifically for litter behind our building on S. Union St., Syracuse. Stuckman’s on 9280 N. Koher Rd. E. has offered to take litter bags too.
From 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, April 25, we will be having special Earth Day activities at the depot. People that stop in and register their cleanup activities will receive a special litter buster bandana, plus bottles of water and snacks to keep them energized for litter busting. Owens has donated the water and we will have Culver’s tokens for a free custard, a delicious treat after your hard work.
If you embark on a litter adventure please follow some common safety tips. First, never pick up anything that you can’t identify. Sharp items and unknowns should be left for the local authorities. Let them know you have found a suspicious item. When in doubt, there is no doubt : don’t pick it up.
Second, wear proper clothing: long sleeves, pants, gloves, closed toes shoes and bright colors are your uniform. That is why we offer orange vests and bags to help you be seen. If children are a part of your group, do not have them pick up litter near a street. Adults near a street should always stay vigilant and face traffic if you are cleaning a ditch on the side of the road. Next, be alert for snakes and poisonous plants if you are in grassy areas; we want a clean county not poison ivy to be your souvenir. Lastly, stay off private property; respect the rules.
One final exciting twist. Post pictures of litter collected on our Facebook page, between the dates of Saturday, April 11, and Friday, May 1, at facebook.com/kcrecyclingdepot. The picture we find most interesting will win a $30 gift certificate to our Eco Store. So, let’s utilize some of this spring energy and get out littering busting! Call us at (574) 372-3087 to register. Stay tune for more Earth Day events in April.