Big turnout for expanded Dump & Donate Day
An expanded Dump & Donate Day June 18 at Coronado High School produced “fantastic” results, according to its lead organizer, Barbara Harris. “This is the biggest one we've ever done,” she said.
It was the first time in the free annual event's seven-year history that El Paso County Hazardous Waste brought its crews, and they reported drop-offs from 43 cars, with the main item being paint cans (more than 600 in all). Other items included batteries, aerosols, fluorescent light bulbs and different types of flammable items.
Also new this year was Blue Star Recycling, which left the three-hour-plus event with a total of 2,816 pounds of electronic waste.
In its second year at the event was the Fire Department's large chipping machine, which filled two truckloads with mulch. “Last year, we didn't fill up one truck,” said Harris, who heads the Harris Group Realty firm.
She and co-workers from her Barbara Harris Action Team also sponsor a volunteer coat drive for charity every fall.
Other availabilities were two dumpsters (both of which wound up being filled) for people to drop off non-hazardous household trash and a Catholic Charities truck accepting donations of lightly used clothing (amounting to a truckload).
“It excites me that we're able to touch that many people, and to help people pick up their yards and homes,” Harris said.
Cash donations were not requested, but some people gave money anyway. The total by the end of the day was $115, and Harris said she split that between Catholic Charities and the Fire Department's Muscular Dystrophy Association fund.
Harris pointed out an additional example of the giving spirit. When people dropped off and/or donated items earlier in the morning, they were given flyers noting that local pantries need canned food. Sure enough, many of those people came back with cans later on, Harris said.
The event had been publicized citywide, but a large number of the participants were from the Westside, she noted.
Here is the rest of the El Paso County Hazardous Waste crew's collection list: 177 pounds of batteries, 35 gallons of aerosols, 104 fluorescent light bulbs, 120 gallons of flammables, two 55-gallon drums of flammable loosepack and 10 gallons of bulked flammables.
Westside Pioneer article