Dear Eartha, Every year around the holidays, I consider getting rid of my old lights that don’t work anymore. Do I have any options in Summit County? What about the dying tree dropping needles all over my floor?
The holidays have come and gone, and you might be wondering what to do with all the stuff you’ve accumulated over the past few weeks – Christmas trees, string lights, old televisions that have since been replaced, you name it. The holidays are an incredibly wasteful time, and the Summit County Resource Allocation Park (aka SCRAP, aka the landfill) sees a spike in holiday waste dumped each year. Americans throw away 25% more trash during the holidays than any other time of year. Luckily, you don’t have to go far to keep some of these common items out of the landfill.
In an earlier column, I debated real versus artificial Christmas trees, ultimately agreeing that real trees typically have an environmental advantage over fake trees. Regardless of what kind of tree you have, it’s important to make sure you dispose of it properly. If you do have an artificial tree you’re ready to retire, consider hanging onto it until next season, when they are in high demand. Most thrift stores or churches won’t take artificial trees after the holidays. If you cannot hang onto it until the 2022 holidays, into the landfill it goes.
If you opted for a real tree, you have options in each town – likely right around the corner from where you live. By going this route, you’ll feel better knowing that the tree you showed so much love over the holidays is either made into High Country Compost, or burned as an offering to Ullr. Here’s the list of drop-off sites:
267 Marina Rd.
Trees accepted 24/7 until January 31 to be made into High Country Compost.
579 Wellington Rd.
Trees accepted 24/7 through January 31 to be burned as offerings to Ullr.
275 Lake Dillon Dr.
Trees accepted 24/7 until January 15 to be made into High Country Compost.
Trees accepted until January 31.
Contact Public Works at (970) 262-7364 for more information.
All of Summit County
639 Landfill Rd.
Trees accepted Mon-Fri 7:00AM-3:30PM and Sat 7:00AM-12:00PM until January 31 to be made into High Country Compost.
I’m sure we’ve all experienced it – setting up your tree or house decorations exactly how you want it, lights and all, and plugging it in only to find out that a kinked wire or missing bulb has caused the entire string to go dark. If you can’t replace the bulb or fix the entire string, you can ensure your old lights are being disposed of properly by dropping them off at the SCRAP. The SCRAP accepts string lights and all manner of electronic waste such as computers, tv sets, cell phones, etc. It’s free to drop off with a local ID.
Old Toys, Furniture, Clothes, etc.
If you’re like me, you probably don’t like hanging onto things you don’t need. Instead of trashing your old stuff, consider donating to one of the local thrift stores. Most of the places you can donate to in Summit County use the money they make on these items to support local non-profit organizations. Make sure you check with these stores for their donation hours and to ensure they will accept whatever you’re dropping off.
Habitat for Humanity
1291 Blue River Parkway, Silverthorne
Accepts furniture, home decorations, and most household items.
Proceeds benefit Habitat for Humanity
Resaddled Thrift Shop
252 Warren Avenue, Silverthorne
Accepts gently used clothing, small household items, DVDs, and outdoor gear.
Proceeds benefit Blue River Horse Center
For Pet’s Sake Thrift Shop
203 N Main Street, Breckenridge
Accepts gently used clothing, housewares, linens, books, art, and more.
Proceeds benefit Animals Rescue of the Rockies
While Christmas may be over and the new year underway, the next “holiday” is just around the corner. From Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day, to the summer solstice and July 4, there’s always a reason to get festive. No matter which holidays you observe, here’s my challenge: consider ditching the cheap plastic stuff for quality products made to last.