September 11, 2013

Recycling event draws a crowd





Larger items such as big-screen televisions were set aside while crews filled cardboard containers and pallets with items dropped off Saturday at a Habitat for Humanity electronics recycling event at the Brussels Community Center. Plans are already underway to repeat the event next year.

Cars and trucks were backed up the equivalent of two city blocks Saturday’s at a free electronics recycling event at the Brussels Community Center, as area residents disposed of old televisions, computers and similar items.

The Door County chapter of Habitat for Humanity teamed with an Illinois-based recycling firm — Vintage Tech LLC — to collected broken and unused items during the four-hour event. The local group is to receive a share of the proceeds from the effort.

Volunteers unloaded a steady stream of cars, trucks and trailers full of items from residents of the surrounding area. Vehicles with out-of-state license plates were also seen in the line.

Smaller items were removed from vehicles as the cars paused in line along a 200- to 300-foot stretch of Junction Road fronting the Brussels Town Park.

Items such as computer monitors and towers were stacked on pallets as they were unloaded. Other volunteers wrapped the pallets in clear plastic wrap before they were loaded into waiting semi-trailer trucks using a forklift that had been donated for the day.

Several trucks were filled, said Habitat for Humanity ReStore manager Leslie Boden.

“This was more successful than I ever imagined,” Brussels Town Chairman Joe Wautier said.

The Brussels-Union Emergency Responders group held a brat- and burger-fry fundraiser during the event. Wautier, whose wife, Beverly, is the Brussels-Union EMR crew chief, drove an off-road UTV up and down the line of stopped cars as volunteers riding the back of the farm vehicle sold freshly prepared sandwiches and cold drinks to motorists waiting in line.

“I would definitely say we did well,” the EMR leader said in an email.

The EMR group has scheduled a September training class through Northeast Wisconsin Technical College titled “Emergency Trauma Management in Hostile Environment.” The profit from the sale of nearly 200 burgers and brats Saturday was earmarked to pay the $30 tuition for each first responder.

Beverly Wautier said she was confident they reached their goal.

“I’m really proud of our group,” she said. “It’s not easy to find a bunch as dedicated and willing to put others in front of their own personal time.”