By Julie Lawrence Special to Published Apr 30, 2008 at 10:37 AM

If things look a little greener around here this April, there's a good reason. Our editorial staff is busy expanding the ideals of Earth Day into a month-long celebration of energy conservation, alternative transportation, recycling tips and about a million ways, you can be a better friend to the planet. Welcome to Green Month, Milwaukee.

In light of the recent interview I did with Urban Ecology Center Executive Director Ken Leinbach, and in the spirit of Green Month's motto, "reduce, reuse, recycle," I figured I'd tell you all about the Center's recycling opportunities.

The Urban Ecology Center is completely community supported and happily accepts donations other than monetary ones. If you have extra gloves, garden hoes, old towels or sleds cluttering your house, you can recycle them at either the Riverside Park location, 1500 E. Park Pl., or the Washington Park satellite location, 1859 N. 40th St.

Here is a complete wish list for each park.

Riverside Park (Call Judy Krause at (414) 964-8505 ext. 102)

  • Adult gloves and mittens
  • Animal heat rocks and heat pads
  • Apple cider press
  • Attractive afghan for library (oranges/browns)
  • Crayons, markers, pencils
  • Electric golf cart
  • Garden hoe
  • Gently used sweatpants
  • Ice cream buckets with lids
  • Irons (for clothing)
  • Kayaks
  • Marbles
  • Nylon pants (adult sizes M-XXL)
  • Old towels for rags, any size
  • Paper that has printing on one side to be reused in our printers
  • Rain ponchos / jackets for little kids (kindergarten-3rd grade)
  • Reliable CD player with disc repeat
  • Reptile basking light bulbs and infrared light bulbs
  • Sleds
  • Small, foaming pump dispensers
  • Step stools -- one, two, three steps
  • Triple-Beam balance scales
  • Used cell phones, print cartridges, video games, digital cameras, other electronic devices
  • Waterproof pants (adult sizes M - XXL)
  • Winter coats (children or adult)

Washington Park (Call Joey Zocher at (414) 344-5460)

  • Adult boots
  • Bird Seed
  • Clipboards
  • Energy Star dehumidifier
  • Field guides (esp. trees, birds, insects, flowers)
  • Film canisters
  • Fishing nets
  • Flat bed sheets
  • Gloves
  • GPS device
  • Kites
  • Kids boots
  • Love seat
  • Mittens
  • Musical instruments (acoustic -- drums, guitars, mandolin, ukulele)
  • Old snow pants / sweatpants
  • Plastic storage bins with lids
  • Puppets
  • Scarves
  • Sleds
  • Stopwatches
  • Sweatshirts 
Julie Lawrence Special to staff writer Julie Lawrence grew up in Wauwatosa and has lived her whole life in the Milwaukee area.

As any “word nerd” can attest, you never know when inspiration will strike, so from a very early age Julie has rarely been seen sans pen and little notebook. At the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee it seemed only natural that she major in journalism. When offered her an avenue to combine her writing and the city she knows and loves in late 2004, she knew it was meant to be. Around the office, she answers to a plethora of nicknames, including “Lar,” (short for “Larry,” which is short for “Lawrence”) as well as the mysteriously-sourced “Bill Murray.”