OSF competition recycles a ton (and a half) of Christmas lights

MONMOUTH, Illinois- Five Illinois OSF hospitals held a friendly competition amongst themselves to see which hospital could save the most Christmas lights from clogging landfills.

"It is estimated household waste increases by 25 percent between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, adding an extra six tons of trash to landfills nationwide."

Steve Looney, Western Region Director of Facilities Operations for OSF HealthCare, predicted this year’s unwanted Christmas light drive would collect 500 pounds.

The usual competition had three hospitals participating but in 2018 two other hospitals joined the recycling effort.

Together they saved 3,061 pounds of Christmas lights from the landfill.

Eagle Recycling in Galva partnered to accept the lights which can be stripped down to raw materials including plastic, glass, and copper to make new products. The collection drive was held from December 3, - January 11.

OSF HealthCare Saint Anthony Medical Center in Rockford won the friendly competition with 925 pounds collected. Facilities Manager Mike Mader was impressed by the response.

“The final tally from our efforts far exceeded our wildest expectations, especially because it was our first time participating here at OSF Saint Anthony. It’s a tremendous feeling knowing that we could serve as a valuable community resource,” said Mader.

Here are the finals numbers:
#1   OSF Healthcare Saint Anthony Medical Center, Rockford, IL- 925 Lbs.
#2   OSF Healthcare Saint Paul Medical Center, Mendota, IL- 816 Lbs.
#3   OSF Healthcare Saint Luke Medical Center, Kewanee, IL- 594 Lbs.
#4   OSF Healthcare St. Mary Medical Center, Galesburg, IL- 515 Lbs.
#5   OSF Healthcare Holy Family Medical Center-Monmouth, IL- 211 Lbs.

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