14 thoughts on “Clean out day update

  1. Jenn, when I waved at you from my car, I was on the phone with the Salvation Army donation center in Worcester… we’d arrived at the GHS parking lot and found out the SA area was full (and boy, was it full!). We had a coffee table in the backseat and there was no WAY that thing was going back down to the basement. We drove up to Worcester and the nice folks at SA took it… and they also gave us a receipt for everything else we’d dropped off earlier in the day at GHS… a great bonus.

    I still felt very grateful… that was our 5th carload of stuff to the GHS drop-off… so we were able to get rid of a ton of stuff… but I’m not surprised that they just couldn’t take any more stuff by 1:00.

  2. That was just insane! I was amused by several women who were picking through the Salvation Army area for stuff to take on their own. I was debating with she-who-must-not-be-quoted over whether or not a Louis Vuitton backpack was real or fake; she said a woman dropped off $600 worth of Cephalon cookware because she was allergic to the coating on them.

  3. Its all so pretty and satisfying when we take it off the shelves and buy it at Target & Walmart & ____, but it just aint pretty when we chuck & discard it in huge piles on the GHS parking lot.

  4. A lot of people were taking things at the end -As long as it was getting used, there wasn’t a problem with it. I’m not sure what is still there but there were so many bikes left and those were NOT going to be donated but scrapped so I wish people would take them if they are still left.

  5. I was just down at the high school at 7 p.m. (picking up dinner, bad mom) and there was still a TON of stuff. There were two big Dumpsters where the Salvation Army area was, a lot of scrap metal (including what my son dubbed “Mount Bicycle”) and a DPW loader was scraping more junk out of the area where the electronics were.

    I could not believe how many people just dumped baby/kid items, because that was a lot of what was left behind in the electronics area. That plastic play stuff will outlive us all!

  6. I scooped up a bike for myself (I had my first ride in more than ten years!) and my daughter. It was a wake up call to see everyone’s discarded stuff at the end. I’m glad to hear that some people were looking through the Salvation Army pile. Maybe the town could sponsor an annual freecycle (as opposed to clean out) day. In Sudbury, at the town transfer station (there is no trash or recycling pick-up, you either pay for a private hauler or bring it to the dump) they have a section called the “Take and Put” where you can bring things in decent shape for others to take. Maybe they could add that to the brush collection area.

  7. In Northborough, we had an annual Junque Day — leave stuff, take stuff. I think anything left over at the end of the day was donated and there was some quality control involved — I never actually went to it, just edited stories about it!

  8. Well lots of people were taking stuff and calling their friends to do the same, but a lot of the stuff was unusable trash, so I think the freecyle day would be a great idea in theory, but we’d end up with dumpsters hauling it all away. I think it’s sad that when you tell people you can’t leave your trash here, they simply drove to another area and left it.

  9. Heading home on our way back from a rare night out, we just couldn’t resist driving up through the GHS parking lot now (a little after 11:00 pm)… The Salvation Army area is now empty; all that’s left are 2 huge dumpsters — probably filled with most of the stuff that people brought today. 😦 The scrap metal and electronic recycling areas were still piled high, and there were still workers sifting through the scrap metal area. And it’s going to rain tomorrow… how the heck are they going to get all that stuff out of there? OMG.

    Jenn, tell your son Mount Bicycle seems to be gone… I didn’t see any bikes left.

    I like the idea of offering this event on a regular basis, maybe twice a year if possible, so it’s not so overwhelming. Also, I think people should have been required to show a license or utility bill to prove Grafton residency… as your Grafton Times article reported, there were lots of out-of-towners there.

    Kudos and many thanks to organizers, town officials, and volunteers for all of their hard work today… wow. I’m exhausted just thinking about it!

  10. We thought the same thing as Melissa about showing a licence. I also wondered if the day could go a little smoother if they set up smaller collection areas in North, center, and South… that way one area doesn’t get inundated all at once. Your licence or utility bill would show that you’re from that section of town.

    Despite the overwhelming turn-out and the fact that there will always be slobs and freeloaders, I was totally impressed with the hard work Ellen and all the others did yesterday for a first try at something like this. We showed up at 4:30 and everyone was hot and tired and still working their butts off. Kudos for an excellent effort!!!

  11. My suggestion would be maybe to have signups ahead of time — go to town hall, show your proof of residency, give them an idea what you might be bringing, get a ticket for Clean Out Day which you would have to show at the gate.

  12. Jenn I like your idea of getting a ticket ahead of time. Bottom line seems to be that most new intiatives need adjusting and that comes about through trial and error. A good idea shouldn’t be shot down. Volunteers did a great job beforehand and on that day. Thanks for all your work.

  13. I think the overall issue with Clean Out Day is that it was planned by rational people for rational people, not taking into account that a good number of people, when given a chance to act like @#$%&*%$ will do so. And the estimates on how many people — with so much stuff! — would actually show were way off.

    And, for the record, I think “Rusty” is the best name ever for a woman in the scrap metal business.

  14. Fabulous, overwhelming turnout on Saturday. The need for a permanent recycle location or annual event is obvious. Children’s items were not accepted by the Sallies and that should have been noticed in advance. As I helped to pack their trucks with furniture, bed linens and clothing, I put children’s items and decorative baskets in my car. BUT they were not for me. The kid’s stuff went to a battered womens’ shelter and the baskets were delivered to the Sallies on Monday, because they would have gone in the dumpster on Saturday. Proud to have been a Grafton resident, Lydia Bogar

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