Of all the branches of Guilford County government, the Environmental Services Division of the Guilford County Planning and Development Department almost certainly has the longest name. 

And, now, in a coordinated effort with Guilford County Parks, it has something to go along with that moniker honor – the division has just received a $10,000 grant to promote recycling in the county’s parks.

Now, when people clean up from a picnic or a paddleboat excursion, they’ll have the option of recycling waste rather than just throwing it away.

The grant, which comes from the NC Department of Environmental Quality, will help the county move forward with a project to place recycling containers in its five active parks: Bur-Mil Park, Gibson Park, Hagan-Stone Park, Northeast Park and Southwest Park.

The grant, which the county announced this week, will pay for the placement of some permanent recycling bins and some portable bins that can be moved around as needed for events.  The recycling receptacles will be placed near existing trash receptacles in areas of frequent use such as picnic shelters, softball fields and swimming pools.

The goal of the initiative is to reduce waste by at least seven tons at the parks in the program’s first year.

Park officials are stressing that the bins are for things like plastic bottles, tubs, jugs and cans that are used in the parks.  No household recycling is accepted at the parks – so don’t pull up to the bins with a car full of a week’s worth of your family’s recycling.

Dwight Godwin, the parks operations manager for the county, stated in a press release announcing the new bins that the program will bring several benefits.

“We are committed to making recycling a permanent part of the Guilford County Park experience,” Godwin stated. “Recycling conserves resources, saves energy and valuable space in our landfills.”

The items accepted are just what you might think.  However, taking a page from the City of Greensboro, glass bottles aren’t on the list.

Here’s what is on the list:

  • All plastic soda bottles, water bottles, sports drink bottles, etc.
  • All cans – aluminum, tin or steel.

Parks officials warn that people shouldn’t try to recycle things with jagged metal edges since those can hurt the people working at the recycling center.

The items should be clean and dry with bottle caps removed before going into the receptacles.

Folks can learn more about the program by visiting www.guilfordrecycles.org.

For more information about Guilford County Parks, they can visit www.guilfordparks.com.