To run from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., rain or shine, the dump event is free for Bartow County residents and aimed at those who live in the Allatoona area. Reaching 10 years with the event is a sign of the need in the community for such cleanup services, Keep Bartow Beautiful Coordinator Sheri Henshaw said.
“It’s good that it’s had staying power, I guess is the word. It’s something that ... we found a good working combination — something that worked well with the community at that point, and it hung around because it was necessary and needed,” she said.
Henshaw cited the lack of a Bartow County Department of Solid Waste compactor site as one reason for the junk dump’s longevity. Some Allatoona residents may not have the ability to travel to a compactor site elsewhere, and a lack of zoning and services in the area also made the cleanup event necessary, she said.
“It’s a difficult area for these folks and a lot of them don’t even have adequate transportation, so [trying] to provide something to them and give them an opportunity to get them where they need with the services is helpful,” Henshaw said.
Peggy Martin, who works with the Allatoona Community Association, said the junk dump is designed for people to take the opportunity to be rid of their garbage.
“We’re just trying to remove any barriers to taking care of unnecessary environmental clutter. If you don’t have a car, or if you’ve got too much stuff and you don’t have a car ... you don’t know where the dump is, all the reasons you might not go. This brings it into the community and people take advantage of it,” Martin said. “... We’ve always asked people to help the elderly and the handicapped in their neighborhoods when this opportunity comes around. ... If they’ve got a particular cleanup mess that they need to consult with the county on, then it’s a great time to be calling either the Allatoona Community Association or the county and we’ll get them hooked up with the right people to discuss what can be done.”
Among the materials accepted during the junk dump is household garbage and debris, empty gas and propane cylinders, a limit of four tires per person, up to 5 gallons of paint, electronics and waste oil. Open hull boats with no engines will be accepted for a $25 fee, while refrigerators and freezers will be taken for scrap.
“For instance ... we take the freon out of any appliances,” Henshaw said. “We get like refrigerators and freezers and then we sell that for scrap metal and those funds go back to the county. So anything that we can possibly recycle [we do], and some thing we’re required by law to recycle, like tires. We must recycle those.”
Henshaw said she was grateful for the department of solid waste’s help in running the collection for 10 years.
“The solid waste department is essential to this happening. If [Director] Rip Conner did not allot people on a Saturday to come in and do this we could not do it. From the very beginning, from when the Allatoona Community Association was formed, Rip Conner and solid waste — the solid waste department — was very involved and they’ve agreed to help every year,” she said.
For more information on the Allatoona Community Junk Dump, visit www.allatoonacommunity.org or call 678-383-2330.