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Boonsboro Green Fest: Be good to Mother

May 07, 2010|By TIFFANY ARNOLD

BOONSBORO - The hope for this year's Boonsboro Green Fest is that thousands of attendees will take time to honor another mother during Mother's Day weekend.

"We want to offer people an opportunity on how to better treat Mother Earth," said Barbara Wetzel, town councilwoman and member of the event's organizing body - Boonsboro Recycling Task Force.

The second annual Boonsboro Green Fest is Saturday at Shafer Park. The free event will feature 100 environmentally friendly vendors - offering everything from clothing and book swaps to organic vegetables, Wetzel said. There will also be children's activities and performances at the park. Local churches will provide food, Wetzel said.

The event will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., rain or shine. Shafer Park is accessible from downtown Boonsboro's Main Street, or Alternate U.S. 40.

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Wetzel said last year's inaugural Green Fest drew 2,000 attendees, which was one reason organizers decided to make the festival three hours longer. Event chair and task force member Jenny Sarnecki said last year's festival generated $2,000, which covered the event's cost.

"We're not in this to make money," Sarnecki said.

As with last year, Green Fest has a theme of environmental advocacy - reduce, reuse, recycle.

Attendees will be able to recycle items such as wheelchairs, bikes, sewing machines cell phones and Styrofoam - as well as the common stuff, like mixed paper, glass and plastics. People can also shred documents and dispose of unwanted prescription medications.

The Boonsboro Environmental Task Force formed in 2007 to promote recycling and conservation efforts in Boonsboro. Its long-term goal, Wetzel said, is to implement a curbside recycling program in Boonsboro.

Hagerstown and Williamsport are the only municipalities in the county that provide their own recycling programs.

Boonsboro is one of several municipalities who rely on the county's drop-off collection sites, said Cliff Engle, the county's deputy director of the Division of Environmental Management. The county placed two Dumpsters at the Boonsboro Park & Ride, at the corner of Md. 67 and Alternate U.S. 40.

Wetzel said curbside pick up would encourage people to recycle more. Town manager Debra Smith said the town council has considered offering curbside recycling but found it would be too costly.

According to council minutes Smith provided, the council rejected bids for curbside recycling services, which would have begun July 1. The bids ranged from $156,000 to $65,000 per year for once-a-week pickup, according to the minutes.

Smith said Boonsboro's sanitation budget is currently $226,500.

City of Hagerstown engineer Rodney Tissue said the city pays Allied Waste $8,168 a month to pick up mixed paper from 14,329 residential units; it pays $11,210 a month for glass, plastic and aluminum.

Tissue said the cost is covered by a quarterly fee of $37.50 per residence, which also covers the cost of yard waste, trash collection and the county's landfill tipping fees.

Wetzel said it doesn't matter whether the county or Boonsboro pick up the tab.

"We will support it any way the community can get it," Wetzel said.




If you go ...



WHAT: Second annual Boonsboro Green Fest

WHEN: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 8

WHERE: Shafer Park, Boonsboro

COST: Free admission

MORE: Free parking is available throughout Boonsboro and at the First Hose Company of Boonsboro's lot, off Stouffer Avenue. Speakers will present their topics indoors, at the Community Center.

There's more information at the event's website, http://www.boonsboro greenfest.com .

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