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Cloquet to hold one-day event to help residents clean up yards, homes
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news Cloquet, 55720
Cloquet Minnesota 122 Avenue C 55720

Do you live in the Cloquet city limits?

Then consider yourself invited to Shamrock Landfill anytime between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday, June 7. Bring all the stuff you’ve been wanting to get rid of: the dehumidifier that freezes up every time you turn it on, the multiple old cans of paint in the basement, the four bags of leaves you never got around to dropping off at the city garage last fall. It promises to be a one-stop un-shopping extravaganza.

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The city of Cloquet and numerous partners in the business of collecting our unwanted or unusable items are partnering on the first-ever Cloquet Community Clean-up Day.

Councilor Kerry Kolodge said various council members got their direction from residents, who were concerned that Cloquet was looking a little worn, “in need of a face lift.”

“When I walk and bike around town, I see properties that are in need of a clean up or that need to be maintained better,” Kolodge said. “One yard full of junk — old furniture, tires, broken appliances or cars that don’t run — can affect a whole block.

“Our main focus is to clean up yards, but we’re also taking other items, because they might get stacked up in the yard or, worse yet, end up in the ditch.”

If it’s not free to unload all your stuff, it’s dirt cheap.

Accepted items include:

  •  Items in good shape that could be reused, including clothing, shoes, books, household items, toys, tools, basically anything you would sell at a garage sale. All such items will go to the Disabled American Veterans. FREE
  •  Household hazardous waste, including paint, chemicals, cleaners, batteries, fluorescent bulbs, etc. FREE
  •  Construction and demolition waste such as old carpets, old drywall, etc. From residences only. No businesses. FREE
  •  Brush, grass and leaves. FREE
  •  Electronics including TVs, computers, monitors, cell phones, laptop computers, VCRs, DVD players, fax machines, printers, keyboards, PDAs and more. FREE
  •  Appliances, including air conditioners, dishwashers, washers and dryers, furnaces, microwaves, ovens. $2 EACH
  •  Standard truck and car tires only, nothing bigger. $1 EACH without rim, $3 EACH on rim
  •  Bulky items, including old couches, broken furniture, wet dirty mattresses, broken lawn mowers (drained), grills, etc. $3 EACH

 Items that will NOT be accepted, include:

  •  Municipal waste (your standard kitchen waste)
  •  Clean dry mattresses (because those can be recycled)
  •  Scrap metal
  •  Old cars

There will be two lines with city workers checking for proof of Cloquet residency and assessing each car load. Proof of residency includes a current driving license, utility bill or property tax statement. One vehicle per household: car, truck and trailer allowed. Shamrock Landfill is located just south of the Scanlon Park-n-Ride; there will be signs guiding residents to the correct location within the site.

The exception to the one-load rule would be for those who are helping another resident (although they should have that person’s proof of residence).

“If you know someone who has items and you have a truck or you’re part of a church or civic group, help them out,” said Councilor Kerry Kolodge, adding that Shamrock is also providing free food and drink during the event. “If someone is disabled or can’t get there, help them find a way.

The clean-up day has been a subject of debate at City Hall for close to a year. Cloquet Community Development Director Holly Butcher has been working to organize the community cleanup day for months, at the direction of the Cloquet City Council, which ranked “improving the appearance of the city” as one of its top three goals.

Councilor Lara Wilkinson sees the event as a way to improve the aesthetics of the community and bring neighborhoods back to a greater state of vitality.

“Blight and decline impact people’s quality of life and property value,” she said. “Since the foreclosure crisis, we’ve experienced increased issues. This is just one step to help make things better.”

The city is leading by example.

In addition to the expenses incurred by the community cleanup event, the city has hired an extra seasonal maintenance worker who will work to improve the appearance of city-owned properties and areas along Highway 33 and Cloquet Avenue.

“We’re raising the bar on all corners,” Butcher said. “We’re working with vacant property owners, putting more staff time into city property and encouraging residents to work on their own homes.

“Because really, ‘anything goes’ is not good when you live in a community.”

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