TOWNSEND -- Earth Day on Townsend Common promises fun for all. The organizers will give everyone a chance to get a little greener, too.

There will be vendors, music, food, games and visits from both T-Rec, the recreation department's mascot, and Smokey Bear. The musically inclined can listen to performances and drum in the gazebo.

"We're going to have a lot of fun stuff going on. Come for all of the events," said Irene Congdon, the chair of the recycling committee.

Kids and adults can win prizes by participating in a town-wide scavenger hunt. Contestants need to bring items from a list of recyclable objects and to visit places on the list to get a stamp or find the answer to a question.

Congdon said most of the places are nearby and will be open on Saturday, April 24, the scheduled day for the celebration. Two of the places are websites, making the challenge even easier.

People visiting at least three places and bringing recyclables are eligible for the raffle. One of the raffle prizes is a rain barrel since the day's theme is water conservation.

You do not have to win a rain barrel to get one though. They can be ordered during the event.

Congdon said these Massachusetts-made containers often cost $120 but are only $74.95 if ordered during the Earth Day celebration. They will be delivered by truck on May 6 to Townsend. A rolling compost bin, the Bio-Orb, can also be ordered at a reduced cost.


Visitors to the celebration can get a start in disposing of old paperwork. "The other big thing is shredding," Congdon said. ProShred will be on site prepared to shred mountains of paper. "Bring your pickup truck full of boxes. You'll watch it be shredded and it's for free," she said.

With tax season just completed she said people should shred old documents with social security numbers and account numbers to guard against identity theft.

Consumers will have a chance to recycle other unwanted items as well. "We're taking old books and records," Congdon said. The Townsend Ecumenical Outreach will be accepting used clothing. The Boy Scouts will collect returnable bottles and cans. You can even swap your labeled plants. Congdon advised getting there early since the plant swap is so popular.

Some items on the scavenger hunt list will be recycled through a mail-back program. Congdon said many consumers do not know that items like cosmetic containers and plastic cards can be recycled this way.

Residents of Townsend and surrounding communities are encouraged to visit the Earth Day celebration and to use the recycling center. The Townsend Recycling Center will be open weekly Saturdays through May 22 and resume the usual twice-monthly schedule later.

Earth Day will be celebrated Saturday, May 24, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Townsend Common. The rain date for the celebration is Sunday, May 25 from noon to 4 p.m.

Please contact Irene Congdon at 978-597-9191 for more information or to receive a copy of the scavenger hunt list.