A snowy stack of Christmas trees awaits the wood chopper at the Howelsen Hill Ice Arena in downtown Steamboat Springs. Although the city's tree-recycling program doesn't begin until Thursday, residents already have begun to drop off their trees at the arena parking lot.

Photo by Joel Reichenberger

A snowy stack of Christmas trees awaits the wood chopper at the Howelsen Hill Ice Arena in downtown Steamboat Springs. Although the city's tree-recycling program doesn't begin until Thursday, residents already have begun to drop off their trees at the arena parking lot.

City tree recycling program gets an early start

Holiday decor to be converted to mulch

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— Although the city of Steamboat Springs' Christmas tree recycling program doesn't begin until Thursday, eager residents already were dropping off their old trees Friday in the parking lot at Howelsen Ice Arena.

The trees will mulched for use next spring, Parks, Open Space and Recreational Services Department Staff Assistant Susie Kleman said.

"They've cleared the parking lot out, and they've got the chipper out there," she said.

Christmas trees must be stripped of all lights, nails, tinsel and other decorations before they are dropped off for recycling. The trees can be left in the northeast corner of the Howelsen Ice Arena parking lot off Howelsen Parkway.

Wreaths will not be accepted, Kleman said.

The mulch produced in the city's tree recycling program will be used in city parks and also will be available for a fee to residents, who can load their trucks and spread the mulch in their own yards and gardens.

Residential customers whose trash service is provided by Waste Management also can arrange to have their tree picked up at their home. Tall Christmas trees must be cut into sections no longer than 4 feet.

For more information, call City Arborist George Hine at 879-4300, ext. 327. To schedule tree pickup through Waste Management, call 879-2400.

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