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Help is available to recycle your Christmas tree

The Ogle County Solid Waste Management Department (OCSWMD) will once again partner with units of local government and certain high school Future Farmers of America (FFA) chapters to conduct the annual Christmas tree collection and recycling program.

Since the program began in 1999, there have been over 15,000 trees collected, with trees averaging around 50 pounds each, that equates to approximately 375 tons of trees which were all turned into usable mulch.

Starting on Dec. 26, the cities and villages that will have drop-off points include:

Oregon: Park District Maintenance Dept., 507 Hill St.

Byron: Byron boat launch lot, E. Blackhawk Dr. (Illinois. 2)

Forreston: 407 N. Locust St.

Leaf River: 605 Main St. 

Rochelle: Atwood Park, 10th Ave. & 20th St. 

Monroe Center: Lichty’s Landscaping, 309 Pacific St.

Polo: Southwest corner of E. Colden St. & S. Green Ave.

On Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, local FFA chapters will provide curbside pick-up for trees.

"Remove all decorations, lights, plastic bags, and place your tree at your curb by 8 a.m.," said Paul Cooney, Ogle County Solid Waste Management Specialist. "This pick-up service will be offered in Byron, Forreston, Leaf River, Mt. Morris, Oregon, and Polo."

For Rochelle residents, the Rochelle Street Department will mulch trees at the curb during the first two weeks of January, weather permitting.

"All trees should be free of light strands, garland, and other decorations, no wreaths or other designs with wire backings, no artificial trees," Cooney said.

For more information about this program, including specific drop-off points for trees or the FFA collection service, contact the OCSWMD at 815-732-4020, visit the Ogle County Solid Waste Management Dept. on Facebook, or go to the county website: oglecounty.org.