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Green Gifts: Earth-Friendly Ideas for the Holidays

Give gifts with a big impact, not a big footprint.

Wrapping paper, packaging, decorations—Americans throw away 25 percent more material from Thanksgiving Day to New Years than at any other time of year.

If you’re looking to put a little more green into your holiday gifts, here are some suggestions from the St. Louis County Department of Health:

  • Think about gifts that make a big impact without any packaging: tickets to the symphony or sports events, a membership to a museum or the zoo, a subscription to a magazine.
  • Wrap your gifts in scarves, handkerchiefs or bandanas—two gifts in one!
  • For the person who has everything, give a gift to help them help the environment, like a can crusher, cloth napkins, a cloth shopping bag or curbside recycling for the year.
  • Have a geography lover? Use an old map or travel poster instead of wrapping paper.
  • Newspaper makes great wrapping paper and can go right into the recycle bin afterwards.
  • Reuse your gift bags and boxes until they are worn out. Then, recycle!

Check back with Patch after Christmas for tips on how to recycle and reuse your Christmas tree and wrapping paper.

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