This is the time of year when families gather together to celebrate the holidays and enjoy the season. Many of us have fond memories of festive light displays, comforting home cooked meals, and the fun of all the gifts we give and receive. All this joy does lead to a lot of waste, an estimated 25% more, but don’t fret! We have some helpful tips on how to keep your holidays not only fun, but also friendly to the environment. All that packaging from those gifts can usually be recycled, but make sure to check with your local facility. Wrapping paper sometimes cannot be recycled, especially the extra pretty and very shiny variety, but there are some gorgeous recyclable options out there. You can also reuse wrapping paper for gift tags or simple holiday cards, even small scraps can be used to create fun thank you notes. Some people caution that those fun lights spread throughout trees and hung from roofs cannot be recycled, but that is not the case. There are many groups who will take string lights for donation or payment, and you can always contact your local solid waste office, they will usually recycle them as well or point you in the right direction. If you’ve got a tree, there is no need to throw it in the dumpster, there are generally curbside pickups and drop off locations for recycling. Trees can also be used as mulch or fish feeders even! However you decide to clean up after the holidays, we here at Echo hope you and your families have a wonderful season!