Holiday Recycling Does Not Include Wrapping Paper and More

By Cindy Pantea

holiday wrapping and bows unrecyclableAn Earth911 tip says holiday recycling does not include wrapping paper.  By placing gift wrap in your recycling bin you could be actually contaminating all the items you intended for recycling, as the tip states.

It goes on to explain the reason is because most of the time, wrapping paper contains laminates, making it unrecyclable. Same goes for ribbons, bows and tissue paper. Further investigation into the matter shows that cards are not recyclable either, unless they are made of paper only. In fact, anything laminated or accented with glitter, felt, ribbon, charms, etc. are not recyclable.

After verifying with the Customer Service area of Republic Services, waste haulers/recyclers in Akron, it is determined that it is best to throw wrapping paper, ribbons, bows, tissue and cards in your regular trash for pickup rather than in your recycle bin.

brown paper wrappingReusing and Other Options

You could, of course, plan to reuse your Christmas gift wrap and tissue later, at which time you can even cut up your old Christmas cards to use for gift tags or as Christmas gift monogram labels.

For an alternate idea in gift wrapping, consider reusing and embellishing brown paper bags for wrapping or gift wrap with fabric.  Also, there is always the reusable gift bags and boxes.

Easy-to-ReUse Are Christmas Cards

Meanwhile, when it comes to holiday recycling, Christmas cards seem to be the easiest item to repurpose. They can be:

  • Made into a wreath,
  • Used as ornaments,
  • Fashioned into canning jar toppers
  • Cut and sent as a Christmas postcard,
  • Used as embellishments for a making your own Christmas cards,
  • And more.

Pinterest has great examples of some of these card recycling ideas if you need something to get your creativity flowing.

Post Holiday ReUses That Help Organize

If the idea of limited accepted recycling has you frowning, let me share a fun tip for reusing water bottles and solo cups:

Glue either red solo cups or the bottom half of cut water bottles on cardboard, and you have yourself a perfect ornament organizer that you can store in a plastic bin. See more holiday organizing ideas here:

Happy Holidays from Keep Akron Beautiful!

City of Akron Recycling Collection Division Shares Helpful Videos

by Cindy Pantea

Does recycling seem confusing to you? Well, the City of Akron Recycling Collection Division wants to help. They have recently redesigned their web page at: to include two videos that explain more about recycling. We encourage you to bookmark that website link for future reference.

The first video the city department added to their web page explains how the recycling process works at the Material Recycling Facility or MRF. In other words, it is what actually happens to your recyclables after these items leave your curb. The YouTube video, accessible from this link, is courtesy of Division of Environmental Assistance and Outreach of the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

The most recent addition to the Recycling Collection Division’s page is a second creative video, done through a partnership with ReWorks, that explains how NOT to recycle. It tells you how Akron’s curbside process has been made easier, why pizza boxes and yard waste should not be placed in your blue recycle bin, and most importantly, YES…everything you properly place in your recycle bin absolutely does get recycled. You can watch this fun and informative video below, and thank you for recycling in an effort to save the environment and help keep Akron beautiful!

Akron Recycling Is Frustrating! I Can’t Find Bags!

by Cindy Pantea

Keep Akron Beautiful has received comments and questions from residents wondering where they can find clear or blue recycling bags for their smart cart recycling.

Here is the answer to that, straight from Robert L. Harris, Jr., City of Akron Sanitation and Recycling Superintendent, and it’s a good one:

“You do not need to bag recyclables anymore as you will be able to throw all accepted recyclables together in the recycle cart LOOSE. Make sure all food/drink contents are rinsed beforehand. We made this decision a few weeks ago.”

Here is a link to the new flyer:

Thank you to all those recyclers out there who emailed Keep Akron Beautiful regarding this conundrum. If you have additional questions, please contact the City of Akron 3-1-1 Call Center.

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