Christmas Tree Recycling, Recycling Guidelines, Master Recyclers and More!

recycling-waste-reduction-district-of-porter-countyRecycle your Christmas trees, electronics
The Valparaiso compost site, 2150 W. Lincolnway, is closed for the season and will reopen Jan. 10, 2015, when it will begin 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday off-season hours in time for Porter County residents to recycle their once live Christmas trees, wreaths and other organic holiday waste.

The site also presents the opportunity for residents to recycle their old electronics that were replaced by new devices at Christmas. Computers, tablets, cell phones, televisions, and any device that has an electrical cord or is run by batteries can be recycled at the Valpo site.

Other materials accepted for recycling at this site include: household batteries, fluorescent light bulbs (tubes and CFLs), toner cartridges, old media (CDs, video cassettes, floppy disks, etc.), and cell phone accessories.

The Saturday off-season hours will continue through March 30, 2015, when both compost sites will open for the season. The Boone Grove site will remain closed through March.

Find out more.

Two Master Recyclers certified, second class graduates
The Recycling & Waste Reduction District of Porter County recently certified two Master Recyclers and marked the graduation of the second class of Master Recycler interns.

Patricia Jackson from Chesterton and Thomas Murphy from Valparaiso each completed their 30 Payback Hours which earned them Master Recycler certifications. In order to fulfill this requirement, Jackson and Murphy worked in various ways to help educate the public about recycling and waste reduction.

Jackson and Murphy are graduates of the first Porter County program held last spring. The program features classes and guest speakers that teach about waste prevention, recycling processes, household hazardous waste, and composting during a comprehensive eight-week session.

Seventeen Porter County residents attended Porter County's second program that concluded in October, completing their requirement of classes and graduating with the title of Master Recycler Interns.

The class included, from Valparaiso: Catherine Gingerich, Raymond Halfman, Betty Luckett, Joy Lundstrom, Claire Merrill, Carol Sibbrell, Bonnie Sponberg, Bonnie and Susan Swarner and Samuel Wheeland; from Chesterton: Mary Ann Crayton and Denise Reese; from Merrillville: Angela Goodson-Petyko; from Highland: Angela Grady; from Ogden Dunes: Judy Mollway; from Michigan City: Robert Ritchey; and from Portage: Andrea Recktenwall.

The interns must fulfill 30 volunteer Payback Hours in order to receive their Master Recycler certifications.

The purpose of the program is to create a volunteer pool of knowledgeable residents who inspire and educate others in their community to reduce waste in the home and at work. The next Master Recycler program will be scheduled in the spring at a time and date to be determined. Anyone who lives or works in Porter County can register interest for the next class.

Repurpose Place opens in Chesterton
Do you have home improvement or construction materials laying around the house? Perhaps you're looking for a cabinet or sink for that renovation project you will undertake in 2015? The Repurpose Place in Chesterton can help!

The Repurpose Place, a retail store located at 102 Beverly Dr., will accept donations of new or gently used building materials and also sells these items at a discount, based on the condition.

Some of the items they are looking for include: cabinets; countertops; sinks; gently used working, appliances; gently used, non-stained furniture; doors; windows; flooring; plumbing materials; roofing materials; lumber; tools; lawn mowers; snow blowers; and flat screen televisions. The store will not accept paint (but you can take latex paint to Hobart).

The store is run by volunteers from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays.

The Repurpose Place helps to support NeighborLink Porter County, a non-profit assisting needy homeowners with basic home maintenance and repairs.

For more information, please call 219-728-1303 or visit