Please Keep Trash Out of Recycling Bins

Happy Friday! This is another friendly reminder to please ensure you are only placing recyclable materials in the recycling collection bins throughout Winneshiek County. Bags filled with garbage were recently discovered in a Ridgeway recycling collection bin. There was also a ceiling fan in the 48 hour lot paper bin in Decorah. If you have garbage and you don’t know what to do with it, please check out the “LANDFILL” tab on our home page of this website. Find more information about the rural waste drop-off sites in our county here.
The Winneshiek County Sanitary Landfill is located at:
2000 140th Avenue
Decorah, IA 52101
Thanks to all of you that support our recycling program. Have a great weekend!

Closer look at 11 black trash bags full of trash piled next to each other in the recycling center.
Picture of various types of paper waste with a ceiling fan in the middle.
Picture of various types of paper waste with a ceiling fan in the middle.
11 black trash bags full of trash piled next to each other in the recycling center.


Do you have an appliance that you need to dispose of? Check out our Applicances page for directions on where to take your item. Appliances must be dropped off during office hours. Refrigerators, freezers, air conditioners and dehumidifiers (appliances with freon) should be taken to the Winneshiek County Landfill appliance trailer- $20.00 fee per appliance. Microwaves, stoves, washers and dryers (appliances without freon) can be dropped at the Freeport Recycling Center door 6am-3pm M-F without a charge.

Paper Bin Contamination In Hesper

Waste materials from Hesper paper recycling bin. There is aluminum, plastic, and paper.

These materials were found in the Hesper paper recycling bin last week. Only paper should be placed in this bin. Aluminum cans belong in the “metals” bin and the #1 and #2 plastics belong in the “plastics” bin. The brown paper bags can actually be placed in the cardboard bin with the brown boxes.


Happy Friday! The recycling center will be closed on Tuesday, July 4th.

During this time of year, we normally see a significant increase in items getting sent to the landfill and recycling center. We ask folks to avoid WISHCYCLING 🙂 Wishcycling means putting non-recyclable items in the recycling bin with the hope that they will be recycled.

Wishcycled items end up in the landfill. The process of sorting them out at the recycling center and transporting them to the landfill consumes more time and costs more money, so please do your best to sort your materials correctly!

Thanks for recycling and have a fun and safe holiday!

What Do I Do With Uncommon Waste Items?

Do you have a product or material that you need to dispose of, but you don’t know where to take it? may have the answer for you! On this website, you can access our updated recycling guide by clicking on the link below:

You can also search for your material on our “What Do I Do With” page. The link is posted below:

Winneshiek County Recycling Tips

Happy Friday everyone! As we head into the weekend, I wanted to provide some tips on how you can help the team at the recycling center.

1. For the safety of the staff, please don’t bag your recyclable materials. Bagged materials are sent to the landfill because the recycling team cannot identify the items.

2. Please ensure that your plastic beverage containers are empty when you place them in the plastic bin. Any beverage container that contains liquid will be sent to the landfill.

3. Only recycle hard plastics and ensure that they are marked with a #1 or #2. We can only recycle plastics marked with a #1 or #2 in Winneshiek County.

4. Please do not place soft plastic bags in our recycling bins. We cannot recycle them in Winneshiek County.

5. Please avoid placing screws, nails, and bolts in recycling bins. They can damage equipment. Please collect these items in a small container and bring them to the recycling center during business hours to give to the staff.

Enjoy your Friday and thanks to all of you that reuse or recycle waste materials! Keep up the good work!

Compost Your Food Scraps

Rotten potatoes were found in the paper bin today at the recycling center. Please do not place food scraps in recycling bins. We cannot recycle them! Rotten potatoes belong in a compost pile! Here are some tips for starting a compost pile for folks that have never had one before:

  • Build the pile with green and brown materials of approximately equal volume. Kitchen scraps (remember, no meat) and grass clipping are examples of green materials. Dry leaves, cardboard, newspapers, and wood chips are examples of browns.
  • You can add materials any time. Remember to always bury fresh kitchen scraps in the middle of the pile, covering them with partially decomposed material. No meat, bones, or fish should be included.
  • Chop or shred materials, especially if they are dry or woody
  • Turn the pile
  • Keep the pile moist to accelerate the composting process
  • Finished compost is dark brown, crumbly, and moist, with a pleasant, earthy aroma. Large pieces can be screened out and returned to a fresh pile.
  • You can use your compost as a soil amendment by digging it into the earth, as a mulch by spreading it around plants, or as an ingredient in potting mix.

NICC Denim/Sneaker Drive & Earth Day Festival!

NICC Green Iowa AmeriCorps is hosting a denim/sneaker drive at NICC for folks to bring in their old, worn, ripped denim or sneakers that can’t be donated/reworn. After these items are collected, they will be recycled into a new material! Green Iowa AmeriCorps will have a bin available at the Earth Day Festival on Saturday, April 22nd. The event is taking place at the Winneshiek County Fairgrounds in the Community Building from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Come check out their table and visit with many other organizations that will be present. Find more information about the event here:

Flyer promoting denim/sneaker drive with Green Iowa AmeriCorps

World Water Day

In case you didn’t know, today is World Water Day! We are very fortunate to have access to clean water in our area, so let’s conserve this precious resource whenever possible. One way to use less water at home is by harvesting rain water with a rain barrel and using that rain water on your lawn or garden. This is also a fantastic way to repurpose a plastic barrel! If you are interesting in building your own rain barrel, Winneshiek County Conservation and Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) are holding a workshop on April 13th at 5:30 PM in the Lake Meyer Campground Shop. Registration is required and there is a fee for the materials. To find out more about this event, visit WCC’s website by clicking on the link below!

Global Recycling Day

Did you know that tomorrow is Global Recycling Day? Global Recycling Day was created in 2018 to raise awareness about the value of our natural resources and how we can protect them by recycling more. It’s essential that people think about waste as resources when we look at the materials around us. Have a great weekend, and please remember to recycle those valuable resources!

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