The parking lot behind Brewer Science became an orphanage of sorts this past Saturday for a variety of trash items that wouldn't normally find a home.
More than 200 people dropped off a variety of appliances, old electronic equipment and tires at this annual collection.
"This is an event that we do each year where we collect 'orphan waste' or those things that are somewhat difficult to get rid of," said Brady Wilson, director of environmental services for the City of Rolla.
The City of Rolla, along with Ozark Rivers Solid Waste Management District, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Phelps County Commission, Brewer Science and Meramec Regional Planning Commission were all sponsors of the event.
Folks from across six area counties took advantage of this opportunity to clean out their house or garage and rid themselves of such things as outdated computer gear or broken dishwashers.
Chris Clinton from Rolla was among them. He pulled up with a minivan full of old audio equipment, cables and computer pieces and was glad to see them hauled off.
More than a dozen workers from Midwest Recycling Center were in charge of sorting the materials that came in. According to Wilson, this included 121 TVs, 26 keyboards, 64, printers, 24 DVD/VCR players, 31 microwaves and seven refrigerators as well as more than 225 car tires.
"The electronics and appliances are all disassembled into their separate components so they can be used as feedstock in the production of new products," explained Wilson.
"The tires we collect are used by the Department of Corrections as either a fuel source or reduced to rubber mulch to be used in playground cover, or incorporated into surfacing materials such as running tracks, rubberized asphalt or protective matting for instance."
Matt Beard, director of integrated management systems at Brewer Science, has been one of the organizers of the event for the last couple of years. He said last year the event collected 56,000 pounds of materials. By mid-morning he thought that they were on pace to do the same this year.
"At Brewer, we place a lot of importance on recycling and the environment," noted Beard. "We like to provide this to the community so people can bring their electronic waste and people can dispose of it properly."