BRISTOL â€“ The cityâ€™s Trash to Treasure event proved to be popular with area residents as dozens of individuals gathered hours before the event was held Saturday to stake their claims on furniture that might have otherwise been destroyed.
At the public parking lot of Centre Square, off Hope Street and next to the Bristol Health Medical Care Center parking lot, a shipping container carrying a variety of furniture and items was placed by the Bristol Department of Public Works near the Bristol Farmers Market site for residents to peruse at their leisure. The event was slated from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. however, Public Works employees noted that Trash to Treasure hunters were ready by at least 8 a.m. in the hopes of securing choice items.
Bristol Marketing and Public Relations Specialist Dawn Nielsen told the Press the event is considered a benefit to both residents and the city.
â€śItâ€™s a perfect name for it,â€ť said Public Works employee Jeff Gates. â€śIt might be trash to somebody else but somebody else might need this for their home.â€ť
Yanique Givans said sheâ€™s lived in Bristol for 15 years and this was the first time she had heard of its Trash to Treasure event.
â€śIâ€™ve worked with the crisis team of 211,â€ť she said, â€śIâ€™ve been a United Way employee. We get a lot of calls all the time from people who are Bristol residents looking for help. We have a homeless population here. We donâ€™t have a lot of homeless shelter services here. We have domestic violence people who live and low income people here. But you donâ€™t ever find the resources that you need.â€ť
Givans said she felt if there were more Trash to Treasure events, like the one held in Centre Square, it could greatly benefit area residents. She came seeking furniture as well and noted she had items she would be happy to exchange that she didnâ€™t need.
â€śThereâ€™s not enough publicity for stuff like this because there is a need. If we can all help each other and combine our efforts, itâ€™ll make Bristol even better and greater,â€ť she said. â€śIt would be a tremendous help for a lot of people (to have more of these).â€ť
Employees working with the city transfer station over the course of a year have been looking to place items in gently-used condition aside instead of being destroyed at the nearby Covanta incineration facility.
â€śIt costs money to get rid of stuff like this,â€ť said Gates. â€śSomebody is going to take this and use it for something they need. Itâ€™s a perfect idea and concept. Not everything is junk and not everything is trash.
Within an hour of when residents were allowed to take their newfound treasure home, it was gone, said Gates.
â€śIt was pretty remarkable how fast it went,â€ť he continued. â€śThe farmers market hadnâ€™t even started yet and people were just pulling in here.â€ť