The Blue Earth County Property & Environmental Resources Department is helping to keep the holidays ‘green’ this season by offering free recycling of strands of holiday lights and reminding residents how they can reduce waste during times of celebration.

Strands of holiday lights that are broken or are no longer needed will be collected at no cost for Blue Earth County residents. The Holidays Light Recycling Program will ensure that lights are properly recycled. A drive through collection will be available at the Blue Earth County Household Hazardous Waste Facility located at 651 Summit Avenue on December 28 and 31 and January 6 and 8 from 12 – 4 PM. Residents will enter through the front gate and drop-off their lights into a bin. Hazardous waste will not be available for drop-off on those days.

The Waste & Recycling Division provides a few tips to remember when disposing of holiday items:

  • Ribbons, bows and tinsel cannot be recycled and should be placed in the garbage.
  • Broken decorations should be disposed of by placing the items in a box and throwing them in the household trash.
  • Remove all tape, flatten, and place your cardboard in your curbside recycling container.
  • Check with your city officials about local yard composting options for Christmas trees.
  • Styrofoam packaging is not accepted in curbside recycling bins and should be disposed of in the garbage.
  • Foil and glitter decorated wrapping paper should be placed in the garbage, but other wrapping papers should have tape and décor removed, crumpled into a ball, and placed into your recycling bin.

Check out the Waste Wizard Tool at to learn how to properly dispose of your holiday items.

For more tips on reducing waste during the holidays, visit  For more information, please contact Blue Earth County Property & Environmental Resources at (507) 304-4251.