Gardiner brought an industrial-size paper shredder to town for its annual Earth Day event last Saturday, April 19. The paper shredded and sent off for recycling resulted in 30 trees saved and six cubic yards less of landfill taken up, according to town officials. And that was just in four hours.
The shredder was funded and supplied by Anthony Sicari Jr., president and founder of New York State Solar Farm, Inc. (NYSSF). Gardiner holds an Earth Day event annually, but this was the first time a paper-shredding service was offered. A large truck from NYSSF holding the shredder parked in front of Town Hall as Gardiner residents drove up with varying amounts of paper to shred. Quantities ranged from small amounts to half a dozen cardboard boxes full, said volunteers.
Gardiner Town Supervisor Carl Zatz said the town took advantage of the service, as well, shredding unnecessary old documents. It was all about promoting awareness of the need to recycle, he said, and about Gardiner’s emphasis on making recycling a major part of its town goals. The practice not only saves the environment, he said, it saves money. Taxpayer money — the Town of Gardiner aims to save its taxpayers thousands of dollars this year by initiating a program to remove and recycle a full 50 percent of the weight associated with household trash. Since recyclables are handled for free, the more that stays out of the general waste stream at Gardiner’s transfer station, the more money the town saves.
Zatz said that Gardiner’s commitment to recycling includes utilizing Vaz-Co Reclaiming Service, a re-use facility on Steve’s Lane, and Gardiner will soon begin composting.
The town also handed out large trash bags for volunteers to use to participate in the town-wide cleanup effort. Clear bags were for recyclables and orange bags for roadside debris, explained town board member David Dukler and volunteer Joe Cagliuso. The bags could be filled and left by the side of the road for pickup on Monday. New York State Solar Farm, Inc. also donated cheerful yellow reusable tote bags for participants, along with a matching cap and assorted goodies inside.
Across the street in front of the firehouse, the Gardiner Day Committee held its annual Easter flower sale, displaying an abundance of lilies, daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, mums, azaleas and some especially healthy looking hydrangeas, just in time to bring along as a hostess gift to Easter dinner. The flower sale replenishes the coffers of the committee, said Jewell Turner and Cindy Dates, who were staffing the tables and helping customers choose from the potted plants and fresh cuts available. The funds benefit the annual Gardiner Day, one of the most popular local events each year, but the group also takes care of the hamlet’s Christmas lighting and holds an annual dance to benefit battered women, said Turner. This year’s event is on Friday, April 25 from 6:30-10:30 p.m. at the VFW Hall on Route 208 in New Paltz. Details are at www.townofgardiner.org.