Empty bottles and cans benefit Parkrose student groups

It’s time for another Parkrose High School Bronco Boosters “empties” drive on Saturday! See who benefits …

Here, grabbing empty bottles and cans from a trunk at the Parkrose Bronco Boosters can drive, are students Sean Binder and Alex Truong.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

For years now, the first Saturday morning each the month brings out the Parkrose Bronco Boosters “Can Clan” for another deposit-return can and bottle collection event.

At the January 9 event (they hold it on the first Saturday after holiday weekends), Greg Meighen was working with adults and Parkrose High School volunteers, sorting and packaging “empties” all morning.

Volunteer co-coordinator Greg Meighen loads another case of bottles – empty, of course – to be taken in for recycling.

“My wife, Patty, has been involved in the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) for a long time which, is how we got associated with this,” Meighen told East Portland News. “Then, about four years ago, Dave ‘Can Man’ Luce needed to stop doing the monthly collection drives, so she volunteered to take over.”

Meighen recalled how “Capt’n Bob” Jolin helped them out for several years, including providing the use of his large, flat-bet trailer.us out for a couple of years. We kept it going, together.

“The PTO now has its own trailer – we had it built for this purpose,” Meighen explained. “This one belongs to the organization; and we’re doing our best to help keep this thing going.”

Parkrose High student Stephanie Tran carries a tote of bottles into the sorting area.

Many volunteers make the work involved easier – but, it is work. “It helps that we have a student group helping out each month,” Meighen commented. “This month, it’s the Parkrose High Key Club.”

The drives produce as much as $8,000 a year to support school activities, explained Meighen.

Members of the Parkrose High Key Club gather around some of the cans they’ve helped collect, sort, and bag.

The student group gets a cut of the proceeds from the returned cans and bottles, added Meighen – as he introduced Nhu Nguyen, Parkrose Key Club President.

“The Key Club is a student-led organization that helps build leadership skills and abilities,” Nguyen said. “It also helps students gain in volunteer experience. Through the club we meet other people through other schools in the area – throughout the state, and across the country.”

Your empty deposit-return cans and bottles help student organizations and the PTO raise money for events and activities.

Next drive is February 6
The next Parkrose Bronco Boosters Pop Can Drive is Saturday, February 6, from 9 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Take your deposit-return cans and bottles with you to help support their community educational efforts at their outer East Portland school. A different school organization volunteers for duty each month.

They’ll be back at the Parkrose Middle School front entrance, at 11800 NE Shaver Street, 97220. It’s coordinated by Patty Meighen; contact her at pmeighen@hotmail.com.

© 2016 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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