Recycling During The Holiday Season

By: Leigh Patterson

With the Christmas holiday being just around the corner, there are most likely boxes being shipped and delivered to your home, and if you are like me, there are many more packages delivered now than other months during the year. I usually do some of my Christmas shopping online, but with the COVID-19 pandemic, I can honestly say I have done much more online shopping this year. More online shopping means more cardboard boxes to deal with! Thankfully, all of those extra boxes can be easily recycled if not reused.

Cardboard boxes are just one of the many items that can be recycled at Christmas time. If these items cannot be reused, I encourage you to recycle them. Recycling these items will eliminate extra garbage in your home garbage receptacles and will also keep these items out of the landfill.

Here is a list of some of the common holiday items that can be recycled at the Athens-Limestone Recycling Center (ALRC):

  • Cardboard Boxes – Please remove all plastic, Styrofoam, or other materials before taking them to the center, and remember to break boxes down before placing them in the bins at the center.
  • Gift Boxes – Gift boxes can sometimes be reused, but when the time comes to discard them, please recycle them. Make sure to remove all bows before recycling.
  • Wrapping Paper – The same rule applies to wrapping paper: please remove all bows before recycling. Bows are not recyclable unless made of paper. If it doesn’t tear, it’s not recyclable.
  • Tissue Paper – Some tissue paper can be reused if in good shape. If not, recycle it!
  • Greeting Cards and Paper Gift Tags – We all enjoy receiving Christmas cards, but when the holidays are over and you do not wish to store the cards or reuse them for another project, recycle them.
  • Gift Bags – Gift bags are another item that can be reused, but after they wear out, if they are made of paper, then they may be recycled.
  • Electronics – Many times new electronics are purchased as gifts during the holidays. Bring your old electronics that have been replaced (string lights included!) to be recycled to keep them out of the landfill. The center will accept any electronics with a cord or battery for recycling. There is a $10 charge for televisions, and all other electronics are accepted for free.
  • FOG (Fats, Oils and Grease) Recycling – Holiday cooking means more fats, oils, and grease to dispose of in your kitchen. To recycle these, just pick up a free FOG container from one of the cages located at the Athens-Limestone Recycling Center, at the KALB office, or at the Athens Utilities Building. Fill your container with fats, oils, and grease from your kitchen. Return the full container to the bottom shelf of any of the FOG cages and take an empty one. Let’s keep those FOGs out of our drains and sewers!

For a list of all other items that ALRC is currently accepting, please visit Under the Recycling tab click “Athens City and Limestone County Recycling.”

The Athens-Limestone Recycling Center will be closed from Christmas Eve through the Christmas holiday weekend so that the management and staff can enjoy time with their families. Out of respect for the staff, please hang on to your items until Monday, December 28. These men and women have been working extremely hard with only half of the normal staff during this difficult year, yet they continue to provide these important services to Limestone County residents. Collection bins will not be available while closed. Please respect the holiday hours and do not leave items at the center while closed. This is considered illegal dumping.

Here are the Athens-Limestone Recycling Center Hours for the week of December 21:
Monday, Dec. 21 – 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 22 – 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Wednesday, Dec. 23 – 6:30 a.m. to noon
Thursday, Dec. 24 – CLOSED
Friday, Dec. 25 – CLOSED
Saturday, Dec. 26 – CLOSED
Sunday, Dec. 27 – CLOSED

The KALB Office will be closed from Thursday, December 24 through Sunday, January 3. We look forward to getting back to work in January, as we have a lot planned for 2021; so stay tuned!

I, along with the KALB Staff and the Recycling Center Staff, would like to wish you a Happy Holiday Season, a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!
By: Leigh Patterson
Executive Coordinator – Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful