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Learning Center

Here District staff members provide timely and useful information to you in a format that will allow you to quickly learn how every step you take to reduce, reuse and recycle DOES matter. The best way to stay connected and ensure you receive updates and reminders from us is to sign up for our e-newsletter; just complete the form at the bottom of our homepage.

2018 Farmers’ Market Info

Posted by on May 22, 2018 in Learning Center

If you are working on being a locavore, it helps to have a plan.  Whether you are a Farmers’ Market newbie or a well-seasoned veteran, we have got the low-down on what you can expect to find in-season and when and where in Hendricks County. Why does it matter? Eating locally supports local agriculture, requires the use of less energy to transport food, fosters a sense of community, makes less waste and it is better for you. Before you visit a Farmers’ Market it helps to know which fruits and vegetables will be at the peak of the season so you can plan accordingly. The info below will allow you to know when you can find your favorites and also when the season will wane (this is when you can get the best deal on bulk purchases). We will focus on the local favorites: Strawberries & Blackberries:  Get ready! These delicious little beauties are ready in June. Look for shiny, brightly colored fruits that are fragrant. Lettuce & Other Greens:  High in antioxidants and easy to prepare, greens are also ready in June. Be sure to eat them soon after purchase for the best flavor. Peas:  Peas that are homegrown are sweet and lovely. Eat them raw, cook them right away or freeze them for later. Peas are available throughout June and into July. Potatoes, Broccoli, Carrots & Beets:  Farmers’ Markets have all kinds of varieties to choose from. Step out of your comfort zone and try something new. You will find all of these available beginning in mid-late June and into July. Beans, Cucumbers, Melons, Sweet Corn, Squash & Tomatoes:  Jackpot! All of these wonderful local favorites are ripe at about the same time. Mid-July through August you will be able to feast on this bounty. Now that you know what will be available, you need to know when and where to take advantage of this lush, local produce. Fortunately, this community is blessed with many active Farmers’ Markets. Here are the dates, times and locations for 2018: Avon:  Tuesdays, 4pm to 7pm, June through September  in the parking lot in front of Hendricks Regional Health, Avon (8244 E US Hwy 36) Brownsburg:  Thursdays, 4pm to 7pm, June 7 through September 6 at the Brownsburg Town Hall Green (61 N. Green Street) Danville:  Saturdays, 8am to noon, May 12th to September 1st on the west side of the Courthouse Square Pittsboro:  Wednesdays, 5:30pm to 7:30pm in July and August at Scamahorn Park (52 W. Main Street) Plainfield:  Wednesdays, 4pm to 7pm, beginning June 6th to September 12th, Plainfield Friends Meeting (US Hwy 40 & St Rd 267)...

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Unwanted Medicine Dispsoal

Posted by on May 22, 2018 in Learning Center

If you have expired or unwanted medicines to get rid of, here’s what you should know: Medicines that are flushed down a toilet or washed down a drain ultimately end up in our water supply.  The chemicals used to manufacture today’s medicines often cannot be removed by the wastewater treatment process.  So, PLEASE DON’T FLUSH MEDICINES! Stockpiles of old, unwanted medicines can become the target of those looking for drugs to abuse. Every 25 minutes someone dies from a prescription drug overdose; learn more at Bitterpill.IN.gov. There are now four permanent unwanted medicine drop boxes located around the county: Avon Police Station | 6550 E. US Hwy 36–available during normal business hours (Mon-Friday, 8am-4:30pm) Brownsburg Police Station | 31 N. Green Street–available 24/7 Plainfield Police Station | 1075 W. Main Street–available during normal business hours (Mon-Friday, 8:30am-5pm) IU Health West Hospital | 1111 Ronald Regan Pkwy, Avon–available 24/7, near the elevator in the lobby of the Women’s Center. Hendricks County Sheriff’s Office | 925 E. Main Stree, Danville–available 24/7 in the lobby of the County Jail Unwanted medicines are also accepted at the District’s Tox-Away Days thanks to the generosity of the Hendricks County Substance Abuse Task Force and the Hendricks County Health Department. Regardless of the disposal program you utilize, leave medicines in their original container.  Personal information (your name, address, phone number) may be removed, but the name, original quantity and prescribing pharmacy information should remain on the container. Don’t forget that over-the-counter and pet medicines should be disposed of in this manner as well. Mail-in medication disposal programs are also available through some local retailers. If you have questions about how to properly dispose of your medications, please contact us.  We’ll be glad to...

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A ReStore Reminder

Posted by on Apr 30, 2018 in Adult Outreach, General, Learning Center, Recycling

Whenever you are cleaning and clearing out, consider donating items that otherwise might be thrown away, to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore. And, as you embark on those DIY projects, don’t forget to shop the ReStore for the supplies and materials you need.  The Habitat for Humanity ReStore, located at 1099 N. Avon Avenue, Avon, is a great reuse resource. You can save some money, support a great organization and keep waste from the landfill. Items accepted for donation (must be in good/usable condition) include: • Latex Paint (reusable, nearly full containers, less than one-year-old) • Furniture (no rips, stains or smells) • Flooring • Flat Panel TVs • Appliances • Lawn Mowers • Gas Grills • Cabinets • Tools • Sinks • Vanities • Lighting • Building Materials • Toilets • Windows • Doors • Counter Tops • HVAC Components • Books Not only can you donate and shop at the ReStore, but they will also pick up large donations at your location.  Call 317-707-7530 to coordinate a donation pick-up.  Visit their website or find them on Facebook for more information....

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Consider Composting!

Posted by on Apr 30, 2018 in Adult Outreach, General, Learning Center

Food waste and yard waste together make up about 25% of what we throw away.  That means almost ¼ of what we toss can be composted!  We can recycle nutrient-rich “stuff” like leaves, twigs, grass clippings, weed and shrub cuttings, garden waste, and food waste back into the soil by letting nature do her thing. Composting reduces the need to water because of organic matter’s great water-holding capacity.  This can be a real money saver if you are on city water.  Compost can also replace the need for chemical fertilizers, improve soil structure (which cuts down on erosion), increase yields of fruit and vegetable gardens, and it can be fun! There are many different styles of composting, but they will all result in rich organic material that can be a great soil amendment.  And the best news is that compost happens…you can’t mess it up.  In fact, composting can be as easy as burying food scraps other than meats in your garden or flowerbeds.  Be sure you dig a hole at least 1′ deep and cover the scraps with 8″ or more of soil so animals will leave them alone. If you want to make compost that you can spread, here are the basics. Pick whichever method works for you. 1.  Bin or Pile – Deciding which one to use will depend on how fancy or neat you want your compost to be.  If appearance is a consideration, you might prefer to keep it contained in a bin or store-bought composter.  A bin can also help to keep the pile from spreading as they will tend to do over time.  Bins can be pallets lined up to made a box, plastic bins, chicken wire, or a trash can with no bottom and air holes in the sides.  A pile should be at least 3’x3’ and preferably more like 6’x6’. 2.  Location – A pile or bin should be kept in a somewhat shaded area so that it won’t dry out so quickly. It is also important to keep it close the where you will eventually use the compost.  Some people choose to put the pile where they plan to plant next year’s crops so the finished compost can be spread right where it is.  You may also want to have your bin near the kitchen since you will probably incorporate a lot of food scraps. 3.  Tools – Basically all you need is a pitchfork to turn and aerate the compost.  A compost thermometer is sometimes helpful, as well. 5.  Recipe – Start with bare soil.  Exposed soil allows the flora and fauna living in the soil to travel into your compost and aid in the decomposition of the material. In general, a compost pile is made in layers of brown and green materials.  The exposed soil serves as the first layer of brown material.  Add a layer of “green”...

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