ReUse Rodeo

1st Annual Durham ReUse Rodeo!

Getting ready for Spring Cleaning and Earth Day? Need a way to get rid of unwanted items without discarding them in the trash?  Come out to Durham’s 1st ReUse Rodeo! 

A Reuse Rodeo is a “one stop drop” event that allows residents to donate gently used items to multiple nonprofits at the same time in the same place.  This year’s event will be held at The Lakewood Shopping Center. Nonprofits such as Trosa, First Pages, Welcome Baby Family Resource Center, Habitat for Humanity Restore Orange and Durham Counties, and the Scrap Exchange will be onsite to welcome donated items for repurposing back into the community. There will also be E-waste recycling and paper shredding on site for your convenience.

 Keep Durham Beautiful has partnered with the City of Durham Solid Waste Management Department, and Durham County Division of Solid Waste Management to bring residents a day filled with reuse, repurposing, and waste reduction. Items accepted for donations will be clothing, books, furniture, housewares, art supplies, baby items etc. For a complete list of acceptable items or more information feel free to check out our event page or contact

Interested in volunteering?
We are looking for volunteers to help with directions, general event support, sorting donated items, and breaking down cardboard boxes.
Volunteers will receive snacks and Keep Durham Beautiful swag. If you are under 18 years of age, parental supervision is required. 
To volunteer at the ReUse Rodeo, please fill out the form below:
Fill out my online form.

Upcycle It! Green Gifts for the Holidays

Join us as we upcycle old newspaper and magazines into beads that can be used for jewlery (you can choose between making a necklace, bracelet, or earings). These jewlery pieces make great environmentally friendly gifts for the holidays. We will provide all the materials and show you how to make the paper beads. 

This workshop is brought to you by Keep Durham Beautiful in celebation of  America Recycles Day (ARD). ARD, a national initiative of Keep America Beautiful, is the only nationally-recognized day dedicated to promoting environmental citizenship, encouraging individuals to reduce, reuse and recycle.

All donations from this workshop will go directly to supporting Keep Durham Beautiful programming efforts. To learn more about our work related to litter prevention, recycling, and community greening- please visit out website: or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

The space for the workshop has been gratiously donated by the Scrap Exchange, a creative reuse center that’s mission is to promote creativity, environmental awareness, and community through reuse.

America Recycles Day


Earlier this week we celebrated America Recycles Day (ARD), a national Keep America Beautiful initiative that seeks to raise awareness about recycling each November. Started in 1997, America Recycles Day is the only nationally recognized day promoting and celebrating recycling in the U.S. According to the EPA, the average individual produces 4.4 pounds of waste PER DAY [1]It is estimated that 75% of this waste is recyclable, however only 30% is currently being recycled [2]. Clearly, we have room to REDUCE our waste stream, REUSE materials we purchase, and increase the amount of materials we RECYCLE.

This year, the theme of America Recycles Day is “Bathroom, Bags & Gadgets.” In efforts to increase the national recycling rate (34.3%), ARD efforts this year are focusing on recycling common products that are often forgotten about – like shampoo containers, plastic bags, and personal electronic devices like phones and tablets. Now, it should be noted- not all of these items can go into your single stream curbside recycling bin that you have at home, school and work. Check out this Recycling Locator to identify where you can take some of those items you are not sure what to do with- such as plastic bags and other film plastics, electronic devices, and clothing. For more information about what you can put in your curbside recycling bins, here is a helpful guide put together by Durham County’s Solid Waste Management department

Why Reduce, Reuse and Recycle?

  • To conserve natural resources. Did you know that recycling one ton of paper saves 17 trees [3] and recycling one ton of plastic can save up to 2,000 gallons of gasoline? [4]
  • To save energy. Did you know that recycling aluminium requires 95% less energy that making it from scratch? The energy savings are  70% for plastics and 40% for paper. [5]
  • To save landfill space. Did you know that more than 28 billion glass bottles and jars end up in the landfill every year? That’s the equivalent of filling up two Empire State Buildings every three weeks. [6]
  • To create jobs. Did you know that for every job created by burning or burying waste, 25 recycling-based manufacturing jobs can be created from the same amount of waste? [7]
  • To reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Did you know that if the U.S. can raise its 34.5% recycling rate to 75%, it will be the CO2 equivalent of removing 50 million cars from the road? [6]

How you can get involved:

How do you Reduce, Reuse, & Recycle at your home, school, work, or organization? Let us know about your efforts to reduce waste and keep Durham clean and green. 


  1. Advancing Sustainable Materials Management: Facts and Figures 2013; Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
  2. 11 Facts About Recycling, 
  3. Recycling Fun Facts, The University of Michigan, Plant Operations
  4. Recycling Facts, MRC Polymers
  5. The price of virtue:How to get people recycling more – even if they do not particularly want toThe Economist June 7, 2007.
  6. Recycling Facts, Recycle Across America, 
  7. Recycling Works Fast Facts, Recycling Works