Organizers of Boonsboro Green Fest focus energy on recycling education

May 02, 2012|By CRYSTAL SCHELLE |
  • Kevin, Kelsey and Sandy Pifer of Keedysville buy some plants and look at the environmentally friendly vendor, during last years Boonsboro Green Fest at Shafer Park in Boonsboro. This years event will take place Saturday, May 12.
File photo

BOONSBORO — The old TV went kaput. Sports equipment is littering your garage. The trumpet your now college-aged son begged for you to purchase hasn’t played a note since he was 10. And for months, you’ve been meaning to get rid of old clothes in your closet.

Instead of packing them in trash bags and hauling them off to the landfill, you might want to bring them with you to the Boonsboro Green Fest.

After all, it’s all for a greener cause.

The Boonsboro Green Fest will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 12, at Shafer Park in Boonsboro. The free event is rain or shine.

In its fourth year, the Boonsboro Green Fest, organized by the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, has been helping the community learn that it is easy being green.

There will be a drive-thru loop to drop off collectibles near the Community Center.

For the first time, residents can recycle TV sets; no consoles will be accepted. There is no fee. Only one per household.

St. James Catholic Church hosts its Gently Used Clothing Swap & Sale. Beside the clothing swap is the Sports Equipment Swap & Sale. See boxed information for donation drop-off times.

And the Boonsboro Band Boosters will collect musical instruments.

And to think, it all started with wanting a place to recycle.

“I have always been a firm believer in recycling, reducing and reusing,” said Rosemary James, chairperson for the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force.

For that reason, she said, she took advantage of dropping off her recycling at bins in the town. But when the Boonsboro Town Council decided to remove the bins because others were misusing them, a group of concerned citizens said they wanted to have a place to collect recycling.

James said the council initially allowed recycled bins to be monitored by what became the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force, founded in 2007.

The goal, however, was a recycling curbside program. And after a survey of the community, James said, they found many of the town’s people agreed.

After many years, the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force reached its goal. On April 30, curbside recycling was approved unanimously by Boonsboro Town Council. Curbside recycling is set to begin on July 1.

James admitted “it’s been a struggle,” but said that “we’re, of course, thrilled” by the decision.

With one goal accomplished, the Boonsboro Recycling Task Force continues to focus on helping educate the community through the Boonsboro Green Fest.

“I can’t wait (for the Green Fest) for a number of reasons. For one, my attic is full of things to recycle,” said Janeen Solberg, who co-chairs the Boonsboro Green Fest along with Barbara Wetzel.

Solberg said Boonsboro Recycling Task Force and the Green Fest committees work together in their missions.

“The Green Fest gave us a way to broaden our reach,” Solberg said. “It gave us a focus, it lent itself in to our desire to educate people.”

But mostly, Solberg said, the Green Fest was a way to show the community that recycling can be fun.

To add to that feeling this year, the Green Fest is expanding the festival to include more music.

Yardslippers, a Frederick-Md.,-based band, will perform from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. And Grammy-nominated performer Ray Owen will perform from 2 to 5 p.m. Singer-songwriter Tony M. Music will perform periodically during the day at the Kids Zone.

James said she hopes that people walk away from the festival “knowing that there’s one thing that you could do or change.”

From making a commitment not to use plastic bags or to recycle cereal boxes. Or stop using plastic water bottles; that’s one reason there is a water station at the Green Fest, so make sure to bring your own water bottle.

Solberg said a few years ago she didn’t know wine corks could be recycled — or toothbrushes, for that matter. This year, she said, a group at the fest will be collecting old toothbrushes and the plastic that new toothbrushes come in for recycling.

“I really hope that (the Boonsboro Green Fest) brings an awareness to the families in our community,” Solberg said, “that it will become second nature for someone to hang onto that ink cartridge and bring it to Green Fest to recycle, to not throw sneakers away and bring to Green Fest to recycle to be made into a new athletic floor by Nike, for them to form good habits that are less wasteful and more positive.”

Both agree that the Green Fest will continue on its mission.

“It’s something we’re really proud of,” James said of the fest, “and we’re happy to do for the community. .... Come, have fun, learn about being green; it’s a good thing.”

If you go...
What: Boonsboro Green Fest
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 12; rain or shine
Where: Shafer Park, 37 Park Drive, Boonsboro
Cost: Free admission
For more information, go to
More: Articles of clothing and sports equipment can be dropped off at St. James Church, corner of Ford Avenue and Main Street in Boonsboro at the following times.
• Monday, May 7,7 to 9 a.m.
• Tuesday, May 8,9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
• Thursday, May 10,6 to 8 p.m.
• Friday, May 11,4 to 8 p.m.


Topics covered by presentations at the Community Center

• 10:30 a.m. — “Composing: Black Gold”
• 11:30 a.m. — “Curbside Recycling in Boonsboro”
• 12:30 p.m. — “Awakening the Dream”
• 2 p.m. — “Career Opportunities & Trends in Solar, Wind & Geo-Thermal Technology”
• 3:30 p.m. — “Stink Bugs”

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