Looking good while doing good
Increasing efficiency in waste management is not the sexiest of concepts. So one local girl is giving recycling a makeover.
Lauren Scofield, a junior at Havre High School, has spent months organizing Runway to Recycle, a fashion show of clothing made from recycled materials 2 p. m. Saturday at Holiday Village Mall.
"I really wanted to promote a green initiative in the community, " Scofield said. "And to have a good time."
Scofield and her mother Kim have been working since the beginning of the year with Recycle Hi-Line and local businesses to get the event together.
Now they have more than 25 teams signed up to show off their ecological couture.
The teams all have three members: the designer, the model and the sponsor.
The designers are the ones crafting the clothing items entirely of products that would ordinarily be thrown away, including trash bags, empty cans or cardboard containers.
The models will be showing off the items, as they traverse the catwalk to be erected off the center stage in the middle of the mall.
And the sponsor pays a $100 entry fee, which will be donated to Recycle Hi-Line to help spread awareness and effectiveness of recycling across north central Montana.
Lauren said she had been to places like Seattle that have relatively advanced recycling programs in place, including services like curbside pickup of recyclables.
Whereas, on the Hi-Line, recycling plastic requires a trip to Great Falls, or glass, forget about it.
Tom Tucker, vice chair of Recycle Hi-Line, said he has had to drive more than four hours to Livingston to recycle glass.
Tucker and Recycle Hi-Line Chair Candi Zion have been working with Lauren Scofield on the event, and both will be judges in the show.
"We just whole-heartedly embraced it, " Zion said. "What a unique way to share recycling with the public.
"We're so used to this American culture that the most important thing is beauty, and here's a competition that's not based on how beautiful you are, but how creative you are in utilizing recyclable materials and your knowledge of why recycling is important, not just to this region but worldwide.
"I find it extremely refreshing to see these young girls involved in this. They actually care about our environment and the future."
Though this year's Runway to Recycle is set for swank, with the constructed catwalk, a DJ and an emcee announcing local recycling practices, Scofield is already thinking about the future.
"I want it to keep going, " Scofield said. "I'd really like if it becomes a night event with admission and formal dress."
"For now, we just want everyone to have fun."