Blog

  • 2021-11-23 12:20 PM | Reuse Minnesota (Administrator)

    As many of you know, this time of year is a big deal for retail, and that includes many small businesses. This Saturday is Small Business Saturday, and we encourage you to check out these ReUSE Minnesota members!

    Shopping locally is a great way to find unique gifts, while supporting your community. Plus, by checking out these ReUSE Minnesota members, you’re also probably going to find a cool gift that is easier on the environment (not to mention your wallet).

    So with big shopping days on the horizon, here’s a list for you. Check them out, make your lists, and try not to over do it.

    • Rethos: Places Reimagined - Give the gift of learning! Rethos offers courses on the use of old buildings and sites - whether it's learning about architecture or how to “green” an old home.
    • Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity ReStore - Gift quality used home furnishings and building supplies, or check out their ideas for DIY’ing a gift!
    • Hennepin Restomods LLC  - Is there someone on your list who enjoys restoring cars? This is the place!
    • Old School by Steeple People thrift store - Thrift some quality used clothing and home goods for your loved ones. They have gift cards too!
    • Repair Lair  - Gift quality used and repaired gear needed for outdoor activities.
    • Tech Fixers LLC - Know someone who had a favorite electronics item break recently? Consider the gift of repair! TechFixers can fix things like smartphones, gaming consoles, or even hoverboards!
    • ReUSE Minnesota - Looking for a great way to connect the reuse champion in your life to other advocates? We have individual memberships!

    Do you know of other great local places (that prioritize reuse) to shop small this Saturday?

  • 2021-08-09 12:00 PM | Reuse Minnesota (Administrator)

    Have you heard the great news? We’re thrilled to announce that we recently welcomed Emily Barker as our new Executive Director! Emily started her new position on August 9, 2021, and the team could not be more excited.

    About Emily

    Emily Barker (she/her) comes to ReUSE Minnesota from the City of St. Louis Park where she focused on multifamily, commercial, and event recycling, as well as reuse and waste prevention. During her five years with the city, she established a series of share and swap events, championed the deconstruction of city-owned properties including the former interpretive building at the nature center, and created a directory of all the reuse businesses in the city. Previously, Emily spent two and a half years at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency where she worked on commercial and state agency recycling and composting, and five years at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy where she focused on rural communities and local foods work.

    Emily has a B.S. in biology from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. Outside of work, Emily enjoys spending time with her husband and their 6-year-old son, serving as a mentor at Cottageville Park Neighborhood Garden, and traveling to her home state of Montana. She is also a board member and volunteer cashier at Old School thrift shop in Minneapolis.

    Short Q&A with Emily

    Q: What drew you to this Executive Director position with ReUSE Minnesota?

    A: Reuse and waste prevention are what I am most passionate about. While I know that recycling and composting are important aspects of how we manage solid waste, the need to make a significant shift toward prioritizing reuse is paramount. For me, the opportunity to work full-time championing reuse in Minnesota is incredibly exciting. This organization is one I am solidly committed to and I look forward to the opportunity to lead.

    Q: How would you describe your leadership style?

    A: I am an earnest and dedicated leader who is committed to my work. I seek out ways to highlight the skills and passions of others. A colleague and friend recently commented on my strengths with organizing projects and people. Over the years, I have fostered the important skill of delegation and building a strong team, having learned the hard way that a burned-out leader is not something I wish to be. Most people know me as a direct communicator who values honesty and trust. I lead with my heart, but not without a strong commitment to data and understanding of big picture implications of my work. I value relationships and seek to build partnerships whenever possible.

    Q: What opportunities do you see for strengthening and growing ReUSE Minnesota’s network?

    A: I see three different key opportunities.

    1. One of the greatest opportunities for growth I see is building relationships where they may not always be obvious. One of the best examples I have seen for this has been the collaboration between farmers and tech repair businesses in advocating for Right to Repair legislation in Minnesota. Reuse businesses are diverse in their scope, customers, and locations, and highlighting the common goals between them will maximize the benefits of reuse in our state.
    2. Having worked in both municipal and state government, I see many opportunities to strengthen support for ReUSE Minnesota through local, county, and state policy and partnerships. Having had the opportunity to testify to the legislature on behalf of St. Louis Park and the Association of Recycling Managers, I look forward to representing ReUSE Minnesota in that arena as well.
    3. Normalizing reuse within our communities is also an integral part of building the network. Part of the reason I started the swap events for the city was to create fun and inviting spaces for individuals to be involved with reuse alongside their friends and neighbors. While the swaps don’t directly contribute to the economic side of reuse, they help build social support for reuse as a whole by normalizing the behavior of seeking used items before buying new.

    Q: How do you connect to ReUSE Minnesota’s mission?

    A: Reuse has been part of my life for economic, social, and environmental reasons for as long as I can remember. When I got married, I wore my grandmother’s wedding dress, which she had fashioned out of repurposed parachute material in the 1940’s when other textiles were in short supply because of the war. Her sister, my great aunt, also wore the dress. I wore it partly for financial reasons, but mostly because the dress told such an important story of my family history. I cherished being able to connect with a woman who died long before that day. I valued her ingenuity and resourcefulness. And I simply could not justify the environmental impact of purchasing a dress I would wear for a single day. This simple story speaks volumes about why this work is important to me. Reuse is an integral part of my life, and I see it as an integral part of our state, and I look forward to helping lead the effort to increase the visibility of reuse in Minnesota.

    LCCMR Grant

    Hiring Emily is the first step for our strategic plan over the next two years. Our organization was selected to receive funding from the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund as recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR). Under Emily’s leadership, we will use this funding to provide outreach and technical assistance to communities and businesses to increase reuse, rental, and repair of consumer goods as an alternative to using new materials.

    Over two years, we plan to expand partnerships, create a funding pool for reuse business incubators, and host educational events including another national conference and professional development sessions across the state. Additional strategies include influencing government policies and practices that decrease use of natural resources by creating robust reuse alternatives for consumers and businesses; testing and implementing social marketing techniques to drive consumer behavior; and measuring the impact of reuse across the state through tested, pre-defined tools to prove the environmental, economic, and social benefits.

    If you’re interested in diving into more of the details of our plan, check out the full proposal on the LCCMR site. Let us know if you’d like to be involved and join a committee supporting these efforts!

  • 2021-06-30 10:52 AM | Reuse Minnesota (Administrator)

    Fourth of July celebrations call to mind backyard sparklers, burgers on paper plates, and hands holding red plastic cups. Fireworks fill the sky after the sun sets. The next day there are garbage bags filled with evidence of the fun - but are there things we can do to reduce that waste?

    For the past ten years, people have been participating in Plastic Free July - a challenge to use no (or less) plastic in the month of July with the goal of reducing plastic use throughout the year. Plastic Free July started in Australia, but has since been practiced all over the globe. According to plasticfreejuly.org, in July 2020, 326 million people from 177 countries participated. Further, people who participate reduce their household waste by 5%, and 8.5 out of 10 people who participate make changes that become a habit.

    If this sounds interesting, you can sign up to take the challenge and check out some tips to get started

    Plastic Free July isn’t the only challenge you can participate in. If you want to do a plastic free July, but would like to sign on with a community closer to home, the Coalition of North American Zoos and Aquariums has a Plastic Free Challenge in July. Hennepin County also does a Zero Waste Challenge, and is accepting applications in August 2021. Other cities and counties may host their own challenges too - check out your local community websites to see how you can participate in your neighborhood.

    But back to the Fourth of July - here are some specific ways to reduce waste at your celebrations:

    • Bring reusable cups/plates/utensils/napkins. Yes, this means keeping track of the items and bringing them home to clean. Instead of a plastic bag for garbage, bring a reusable tote to collect dirty dishes/utensils and a bag for napkins.
    • Avoid plastic packaging on your food by purchasing fresh, local produce and buying from a butcher. Sometimes packaging is a necessary way to preserve food and prevent wasted food (which has a significant environmental impact), but when you’re buying more directly (farm to table!), it can be easier to avoid unnecessary packaging and support the local economy.
    • Instead of bottled/canned beverages, brew your own iced tea and/or set up a water station.
    • Use a reusable cooler instead of a Styrofoam one.
    These ideas aren’t just for the Fourth of July, they can be carried forward for any celebration. What other ways have you been reducing waste and practicing reuse this summer?
  • 2021-06-09 11:10 AM | Reuse Minnesota (Administrator)

    By Jennifer Lenart

    Is anyone else surprised that it's June? Spring flew by quickly in my household and we realized that we didn’t celebrate Earth Day the way we had intended. Not to be discouraged, we researched some ways to take the energy of Earth Day into every day.

    There are lists like EARTHDAY.ORG’s 51 Ways to Restore our Earth, and The National Ocean Service’s (NOS) 10 Simple Choices for a Healthier Planet. You can skim the list for something that strikes your fancy or seems achievable, work your way through the list top to bottom, or even close your eyes and point to select ways to make a difference any day.

    If you’re looking for a reflective practice to really get to the heart of your individual power to make a positive difference, check out Sierra Club’s article on mapping your power to make systemic change. This practice can help move you from “what difference could I really make?” to a greater understanding of your unique ability to make a difference, hopefully helping to empower you to make change. The article outlines 5 main areas to put energy towards systemic change: civic, behavioral, social, financial and professional. Here’s one quick idea for each area.

    • Civic: One activity all three resources suggest is volunteering. For a very “Earth Day” like activity, volunteer for a clean-up event or create your own event. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has a great list of volunteer opportunities. This Minnesota DNR page lists volunteer opportunities throughout Minnesota. 
    • Behavioral: Sierra Club recommends that we “create less demand and less waste. Buy only what you need. Repair, reuse, and buy second-hand. Recycle and compost.” This is the heart of ReUSE Minnesota’s mission. For a great list of resources on repair, re-use, and buying second-hand, look no further than ReUSE Minnesota’s member list.
    • Social: Talk about climate change and how you incorporate reuse into your routines with your co-workers, family, and friends! This helps normalize making earth-friendly decisions.
    • Financial: Vote with your dollar. Sierra Club’s article discusses how it's important not to discount your actions if you aren’t able to do “enough.” If this area isn’t where your strength lies, focusing on one or a few of the others does make a difference! Where you can, support eco-friendly companies and organizations – particularly those that prioritize reuse, rental, and repair.
    • Professional: Start the conversation - sustainability teams, monthly green challenges, encouraging low-carbon commutes, opting for better office products and the timeless ‘go paperless’ are all great ideas to bring up at work. As you continue to adapt to new norms in your work place (whether that’s returning to an office space, remaining in a telework capacity, etc.), make sure to be thoughtful about not simply recycling or disposing of surplus office items in those transitions. Reuse as much as possible within your team, and if there truly isn’t a need, find a location where you can donate those items for others to use.
    Do you have ideas for celebrating Earth Day everyday? Share below!
  • 2021-02-15 11:15 AM | Reuse Minnesota (Administrator)

    As the past week or so has shown us, we here in Minnesota have plenty of winter to go. With many of us avoiding indoor gatherings, getting outside offers a much needed escape from the winter blahs - but many outdoor winter activities require special gear. Here are a few tips for how to take advantage of the snow and crisp winter air, without buying a bunch of new items. An important way to reduce our environmental footprint (and save money!) is by not buying new, as the manufacturing of winter clothing and gear requires a lot of energy and resources. 

    Are you experienced in gearing up for winter outdoor activities? Add a comment below if you have tips or suggestions that we've left out!

    Start with Layering Up

    A successful winter outdoor experience begins with layering up properly. We’re well into a year where outdoor socializing is the least risky way to get together so there’s plenty of information out there on how to layer up properly. Here’s a collection of tips for how to retaining heat while socializing outside in the cold: How to Retain Your Heat (and Stay Up-Beat) with Friends Outside this Winter

    Buy Nothing Groups 

    Check out your local Buy Nothing Group. Focusing on a hyper-local gift economy, these groups are a way to see if anyone in your area has winter gear that they would like to offer up for free. You can find out more about your local buy nothing group at buynothingproject.org.

    Rental Options 

    Just as we can rent canoes in the summer, winter offers many rental options too!

    Hennepin County’s Choose to Reuse program has a great list of rental options.

    Some additional rental options include Sawtooth Outfitters out of Tofte, MN (they also offer used gear ), and Piragis out of Ely, MN.

    Buying Used

    Between in-person thrift shops and online marketplaces, there are a number of places to check to purchase your winter gear second hand.

    A quick google search offers up a number of accessible options for local outdoor gear resale shops. Given that stores may have altered hours or shopping restrictions, it might be a good idea to call ahead.

    A short (not exhaustive) list of places to check for used gear:

    Borrow from Friends or Family

    Maybe you have an Uncle who used to be really into snowmobiling, or a friendly neighbor who stockpiles ice fishing gear. Ask them if you can borrow their gear!! Here’s a helpful explanation of borrowing etiquette, to keep those relationships healthy while borrowing potentially expensive gear: Gearing Up: How to Beg, Borrow and Rent Gear Before You Commit to Buying

    Stay warm, and have fun!

  • 2020-07-17 12:00 PM | Anonymous

    ReUSE Minnesota, along with more than 120 other environmental organizations, sent letters to UberEats, GrubHub, Delivery.com, Doordash, Seamless, PostMates and Caviar asking they change their default ordering process to one that does not automatically include single-use utensils, napkins, condiments, and straws. Customers should have to specifically request those items when they place their order and "opt in." 

    It's a small step, but we can continue work on reducing single-use items (that aren't needed at home or aren't needed with you plan ahead and bring reusables) in our daily actions and choices. Press release details included below. 

    ----

    More than 120 environmental groups ask the food delivery companies to make a small change with a big impact 

    CONTACTS: Judith Enck - 518.605.1770, JudithEnck@Bennington.edu | Jennie Romer - 510.685.1575, jromer@surfrider.org  

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 16, 2020 

    New York City, NY – More than one hundred twenty environmental organizations sent letters to seven national food delivery companies today asking that they change their default ordering process to one that does not automatically include utensils, napkins, condiments, and straws in order to reduce the tsunami of single-use plastic pollution entering our oceans, landfills and incinerators. Instead, customers would need to specifically request these single-use items when they place their order for delivery — “opting in” to receive the specific items they want — reducing costs to restaurants and taking an important step to protect our environment. 

    “Takeout orders are up all over the country as a result of the COVID pandemic; however, the vast majority of people eating at home neither need nor want yet another set of plastic utensils, plastic straws, handful of soy sauce or ketchup packets, or pile of paper napkins. Committing to making this small change to their delivery ordering systems would help reduce single-use packaging and save restaurants a bit of money,” said Judith Enck, president of Beyond Plastics. 

    The letter, addressed to Grubhub/Seamless, DoorDash/Caviar, UberEats/Postmates, and Delivery.com, lays out the argument that making these changes will be a win-win-win proposition, saving restaurants money, keeping customers from overflowing drawers of unwanted soy sauce packets, and keeping plastic pollution out of our communities, parklands, beaches, waterways, and the ocean. 

    “Food delivery platforms have the opportunity to reduce the amount of plastic entering our homes while at the same time saving businesses money by moving to an opt-in system for these items. Similar to how customers choose exactly which toppings they want on their pizza, customers should also be able to opt in to exactly which utensils, napkins, condiments, or straws they want," said Jennie Romer, Legal Associate at the Surfrider Founation's Plastic Pollution Initiative. 

    As consumers increasingly rely on delivery services for their meals, the amount of unwanted single-use utensils and condiments are on the rise as well. Food delivery companies have seen increases in orders during the COVID-19 pandemic, as restaurants have been closed for dining in, and customers have been loath to leave their homes. A recent study found that 98% of all U.S. take-out or delivery meals are consumed at home or a workplace, where reusable cutlery is typically available and preferred. 

    “We appreciate the amplification and expansion of our #CutOutCutlery campaign. This is a very simple solution to a large problem and Plastic-Free July is an ideal time to raise awareness about the damage that seemingly benign plastic cutlery imposes on our planet,” said Sheila Morovati, president and founder of HabitsofWaste.org. 

    Items often included in take-out deliveries, like plastic utensils and straws, are consistently among the top items found in beach clean ups across the country. These items can harm wildlife if swallowed, before breaking down into smaller and smaller pieces, eventually entering the food chain. Tiny plastic particles known as microplastics have been found in soil, water, fruit, zooplankton, sea mist, and humans. Microplastics have been found in stool samples and a study found that adults are ingesting roughly a credit card’s worth of microplastic particles (5 grams) each week, with impacts on human health that are not yet well studied. 

    Plastic production is inextricable from both our climate and environmental justice crises. Plastics are made from a combination of fracked gas and chemicals, and their production and disposal is a major source of global carbon emissions. If plastic production and use grow as currently planned, by 2050, the greenhouse gas emissions from plastic could reach over 56 gigatons—10-13% of the entire remaining carbon budget. 

    Plastics and fossil fuel manufacturing infrastructure — as well as landfills and incinerators --are overwhelmingly located in communities of color. In fact, data from the U.S. EPA showed that people of color are 79% more likely than white people to live in communities where industrial pollution poses the greatest danger to their health. Poor air quality has been linked to the tragic reality that Latino and African-Americans have been three times as likely to become infected with COVID, and twice as likely to die from it as white Americans. 

    Reducing our usage of plastics can help address both of these urgent problems, shielding us from the worst impacts of climate change, while improving the health and lives of communities on the front lines of industrial pollution.

  • 2020-05-13 12:00 PM | Anonymous

    Continuing into this next stage announced by Governor Walz, reuse businesses are determining the safest approaches to re-opening parts of their operations and re-offering some services. Since our last COVID blog, there are some updates to note.

    If you are a reuse business and would like to include an update or request for customers/supporters, please contact us – we’d love to include your tips and/or news with the broader reuse community.

    Stay healthy, safe, and happy!Arc’s Value Village – Find Everyday Needs, Treasures, and Collectibles
    Arc’s Value Village reopened their donation drop off, with daily hours from 10:00 am – 6:00 pm. They ask that you use their back donor drive-thru and remain in your vehicle the whole time. All donations must be pre-sorted at home into clothing and houseware items, and transported in sturdy bags or boxes. Clearly label your bags/boxes with “Arc,” so staff members can unload your vehicle and leave your receipt in the trunk or backseat in order to maintain social distancing. Watch this video on Arc’s site for details.

    Bridging – Furnishing Homes with Hope
    Bridging was recently deemed an essential business, allowing them to bring staff back in to begin setting up proper protocols to operate safely. As of May 4th, Bridging is open to accept drop-off donations at both their Roseville and Bloomington locations. Bridging has also resumed their fee-based residential pick-up program for curb, driveway, or garage pick-up. Read more about what items are accepted and details on their process on the Bridging site.

    Habitat for Humanity ReStore – Reused Home Improvement
    The ReStore Home Improvement Outlets are closed for business until further notice. Starting May 5th, ReStore resumed donation pickups with additional safety protocols. Use the website to schedule a donation pickup. Thank you for holding off items if you plan to drop them off at a location – ReStore is working hard to determine how they can begin accepting donations at each store location. In the meantime, consider supporting the mission of Habitat for Humanity ReStore through an online donation

    Kids Rack – Clothing, Footwear, Equipment, and Toys
    Kids Rack is doing live Facebook sales and has their online sales set up through comment "SOLD." They’re also offering personal shopping for customers, and can ship to the US or they also have curbside pick-up Monday – Saturday (limited hours). 

    Lake Country Books and More – Sellers of New and Used Books, Music, and Media
    As long as the post office keeps picking up and delivering mail, Lake Country Books is still selling – 6 days a week! Check out their selection of used books, CDs, and DVDs – a great way to entertain, education, and enlighten while staying safe at home. Be aware we are seeing delays in shipments to Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan. Some go through normally, others have been delayed weeks. There is a big backlog in the Chicago distribution centers, and Media Mail moves slowest, so if you need something reasonably soon, please choose Priority Mail shipping.

    The Lamp Mender – Vintage Lighting is Our Specialty
    The Lamp Mender is temporarily closed, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make a plan for a future visit. Find the lamps in your house that need some extra love with a repair session or an updated lamp shade fitting. You can check out the different services available at the Lamp Mender on their site today so you’re ready when they re-open!

    Minnesota Tool Library – #MTLMADE
    The Tool Library is still open, with tools available for check-out for a 7-day period. They’ve moved to contact-less operations, adjusting open hours, closing the workshop, and requiring members make an appointment for checking in/out tools – make an appointment today. You can also join the Tool Library supporting healthcare and other essential workers by helping make masks - #MTLFaceMasks4FirstResponders.

    Mr. Michael Recycles Bicycles, LLC – A Special Kind of Bicycle Shop 
    During this time, Mr. Michael’s shop is open by appointment only (scheduled by phone only). Call 651-641-1037 to schedule an appointment. MMRB is only offering paid repair services and sales of basic repair parts (tires, tubes, cables, brake blocks, etc.) at this time. The waiting list to receive gift bicycles is currently closed, but please check back on July 1st to see if the list reopened. MMRB is not currently accepted donated bicycles due to limited storage, but will announce on their website when they are accepting again.

    Old School – City Pages 2019 “Best Thrift Store”
    Old Schools is currently closed due to COVID, but the basic operating expenses for them exceed $5,000 per month. If you can help preserve their legacy with a tax-deductible donation, they offer a thousand thrifty thanks! You can make a donation through several options on their site or mail a check directly to their store.

    Repair Lair – Spend Less on Gear (More on Beer)
    Repair Lair’s hours during COVID are 12-6pm Thursday – Sunday. Mask making operations are still in full swing, with a recent update that over 15,000 meters of thread have been used to make the Repair Lair masks. Purchase masks for you and your family so you’re prepared as more restrictions are lifted. Remember, you’re wearing them to protect others!
     
    RETHINK Tailoring & Sewing Lounge – A Different Option for Shopping: Revamp Your Wardrobe!
    RETHINK Tailoring & Sewing Lounge is closed due to COVID, but they are also busy making masks – if you want to contribute to these efforts for making more masks for hospitals and other organizations, make a donation today! You can also purchase a variety of fun, colorful masks for you and your household too. Don’t forget to store clothing items that you can get tailored when the Sewing Lounge reopens. 

    Rethos – Connecting You to the Tools and Skills You Need to Take Good Care of Places You Love
    Rethos has a Rehab Resources page on their website with DIY tips, links to local salvage shops, energy efficiency resources, etc. As spring arrives, Rethos is here to support you as you tackle home maintenance, repair, and rehab projects. While they’re missing working together in person, they’re excited to offer several great webinars over the upcoming weeks with a pay-what-you-can model. Check out the May classes today on their site.

    Tech Discounts/Tech Dump – Offering Technology for Every Need
    Tech Discounts: Starting May 4th, Tech Discounts retail locations in Golden Valley and St Paul will have curbside pickups – learn more on their blog. Tech Discounts also has free shipping on all purchases over $100 from their web-store.
    Tech Dump: Modified, contactless pickups will begin on Wednesday, May 6th, and then no-contact drop-offs will begin on Monday, May 11th.

  • 2020-05-01 12:00 PM | Anonymous

    Updated: Register for event archive

    Interested in the work of GreenBiz and Circularity 20?  Taking place in advance of the larger Circularity 20 conference (August 25-27 in Atlanta), Circularity 20 Digital will offer a visionary keynote interview, informative panels and valuable networking opportunities - all at now cost to participants.  

    Virtual Roundtable discussions include:

    • Enabling Repair and Product Life Extension
    • Increasing Supply Chair Resilience
    • Bringing Reusable Packaging to Scale
    • Navigating Product Take-Back and Reverse Logistics
  • 2020-04-20 10:13 PM | Anonymous
    Heading into the fourth official week of MN’s Stay at Home order, where the passage of time feels surreal, it's hard to believe it's already mid-April. Yet, heading into spring, we’re reminded now more than ever how incredibly valuable life and nature are on our planet. It's fitting then, that this year marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day in the United States.

    Traditionally, Earth Day celebrations center around large, outdoor events and group clean-ups, but this year is obviously quite different. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, an important way you can show support for your local community, while still being sustainable is by incorporating more reuse in your life. When we think about reducing our environmental impact, we often focus on products/packaging when we no longer want or need them and need to manage their “end-of-life” stage (i.e. can I recycle it? can it be composted?). The reality is you have a much bigger impact if you shift your purchasing habits up-front, as the environmental impacts from making new products are typically the most damaging. Reuse (including rental and repair) extends the life of products already in existence and circulation, reducing the demand for new product manufacturing. 

    This Earth Day, commit to supporting local reuse businesses – some of them have online shopping and curbside pick-ups, some are looking for donations, and others will need your business when they re-open. While there are many invaluable reuse businesses across the state, we’re highlighting a few that shared updates on how they’re doing and the best ways for you to support them right now.

    Arc’s Value Village – Find Everyday Needs, Treasures, and Collectibles
    Arc’s Value Village stores and donation centers are temporarily closed. To help maximize your donations when Arc’s is ready to accept them in the future, pre-sort items; clothing in one box, housewares in another box, books in another box. Also, store your donations in boxes or sturdy bags (this will help with transportation too, when the time comes). Be sure to check their website for the items that won’t be accepted.

    Bridging, Inc. – Furnishing Homes with Hope
    Bridging is currently closed to the public until further notice. If it’s within your capacity and you’d like to financially support Bridging through this difficult time, you can make a donation

    Bridal Aisle Boutique – Offering What You Need & Want for Your Wedding, Formal, or Pageant Event
    Bridal Aisle Boutique is selling inventory and retail fixtures at fantastic prices. If you’re in the process of planning your wedding, the Bridal Aisle Team should be on your list!

    Habitat for Humanity ReStore – Reused Home Improvement
    The ReStore Home Improvement Outlets are closed for business until further notice. If you were planning to shop at our ReStore during this time, consider instead supporting our mission through an online donation today.

    Kids Rack – Clothing, Footwear, Equipment, and Toys
    Kids Rack is doing live Facebook sales and has their online sales set up through commentSOLD. They’re also offering personal shopping for customers, and can ship to the US or they also have curbside pick-up Monday – Saturday (limited hours). 

    Lake Country Books and More – Sellers of New and Used Books, Music, and Media
    As long as the post office keeps picking up and delivering mail, Lake Country Books is still selling – 6 days a week! Check out their selection of used books, CDs, and DVDs – a great way to entertain, education, and enlighten while staying safe at home.

    Minnesota Tool Library – #MTLMADE
    Find yourself with extra cash from your stimulus or tax return? Pay it forward and support the MN Tool library – buy/renew your tool library membership, make a donation, or give an e-gift card to your family and friends.

    Mr. Michael Recycles Bicycles, LLC – A Special Kind of Bicycle Shop 
    During this time, Mr. Michael’s shop is open by appointment only (scheduled by phone only). Call 651-641-1037 to schedule an appointment to purchase reused bicycles and/or to drop off a bicycle for repair.

    Repair Lair – Spend Less on Gear (More on Beer)
    Repair Lair is busy making masks – in fact they’re running out of fabric! If you have fabric (flat bed sheets?!), drop it off during store hours Thursday – Sunday from noon to 6:00 pm. Or stop by to pick up a mask at a great price.

    reTHINK Tailoring & Sewing Lounge – A Different Option for Shopping: Revamp Your Wardrobe!
    reTHINK Tailoring is also busy making masks – if you want to contribute to these efforts for making more masks for hospitals and other organizations, make a donation today!

    Rethos – Connecting You to the Tools and Skills You Need to Take Good Care of Places You Love
    Rethos has a Rehab Resources page on their website with DIY tips, links to local salvage shops, energy efficiency resources, etc. As spring arrives, Rethos is here to support you as you tackle home maintenance, repair, and rehab projects. Follow them on social media too for specific project tips you can use right now!

    Tech Discounts – Offering Technology for Every Need
    With the shift to working remotely and distance learning, a lot of us have been faced with new technology needs. Rather than spend an arm and a leg on new tech, purchase refurbished, affordable options from Tech Discounts online!
  • 2020-04-02 12:00 PM | Anonymous

    Reuse, repair and rental business owners: You are a valuable part of the reuse community and we want to help you weather this crisis.  We know that like you, your employees are invested in the circular economy so we want to share this opportunity to support you and your teams.

    Consider taking advantage of the forgivable loan program to bridge your businesses and staff for the coming months through the Small Business Association Paycheck Protection Program.  Loans become available Friday, April 3, 2020 and there will be high demand.  Our local advisors recommend that you get your application to your business bank Friday or as soon as possible.

    U.S. Small Business Association (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

Reuse Minnesota was founded in 2012 and is a member-based nonprofit that supports repair, resale, and rental businesses, bringing visibility to the reuse sector as a means to lower our state's impact on the environment.


Contact us
Email Reuse Minnesota
612-314-6283
reusemn.org

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