Spring Cleaning – Options for Donations


Thanks to neighbor Kirk W. who asked me if bulk curbside pickup was scheduled this year. It’s a popular way to get rid of stuff, and is offered every other year. Our next bulk pickup will be in 2018. In the meantime, here are a few ways to get rid of unwanted items:

  1. If you have light household items or clothing, Simple Recycling will pick those items up with your regular recycling. If you didn’t get the orange plastic bags from them,  call 866-835-5068 or pick up bags at City Hall (4141 Douglas) at their reception desk.
  2. If you’d rather donate to charity, Bibles For Missions (36th & Noble Ave.) and ARC are two area non-profits who accept many items for drop-off. Disabled American Vets (DAV) and a few other charity organizations will pick items up at your home. Or view options and schedule a free home pickup service at DonateStuff.com.
  3. Drop off items at the Brooklyn Park transfer station off 169 and Brooklyn Blvd. Here’s a link to see what items they accept (most are no charge except appliances/tires — just bring your drivers license). Also, if you have motor oil, paint or similar items, this is the place to drop them off.
  4. Post your item (for sale or free) on NextDoor.com or put a Free sign on the item and place on the curb. Many have great success with this option! If you’re not familiar, NextDoor is a free app for your phone or desktop where you sign up in your neighborhood.

I hope this helps, and please let me know if you have any other suggestions or questions by contacting me. Enjoy that reclaimed space!

March Fundraising Madness!

Besides basketball, March was a busy month for area events and fundraisers — all exceeding their goals. The annual Empty Bowls Robbinsdale fundraiser was held March 7 at Cooper High School, and broke a record for donations to PRISM and NEAR food shelves! It was an honor to be asked to serve as a greeter this year.


Light of Crystal held their 4th annual  bowling tournament at Doyles March 11, raising over $2,000 towards donating to community projects. Thanks to Shawn Smith and Rebekah Daly Smith with LoC volunteers!


The first inaugural Crystal Ball was held March 18, organized by the Community Outreach Task Force. This group of citizen volunteers worked with city staff and council to create an affordable evening of delicious food by Milton’s, music by The R Factor, and celebration of Crystal’s residents – four who received Neighbor awards for their giving spirits. Congratulations to John Jeffy, the McHenry family (pictured), Shaun and Heather O’Hara, and Bruce Gaertner! Money and pantry items were also raised for our local NEAR food shelf.


Also on March 19, Firefighters Fighting Hunger Food Drive was another big success, collecting 2,851 pounds of food and over $6,500. Pictured is a group volunteer photo from West Metro Fire District. There is still time to donate and get your monetary donations matched. You can bring your donations to West Metro HQ at 4251 Xylon Ave. N. in New Hope or go directly to The Food Group, NEAR, PRISM or any of the other local food-shelves.


Bowling for Rocco, our Crystal K9 raised over $4,100 on March 19 for his ongoing care and training. Hard to believe he’s 5 years old already, and last year assisted with over 50 arrests. Good boy! Thanks to all who organized and donated, and for VFW Post 494 for hosting the lunch.


On a special note: many bowling events and tournaments have been at Doyle’s Bowling & Lounge, and we will miss them greatly when they close this spring. Cornerstone Church has bought the property to renovate and open this fall, moving from their southern Crystal location. Thanks to owner Rita Gardner and all the staff for the great memories!

For council meeting updates, visit my recap page — and City of Crystal’s website to view meetings and council packets.


Simple Recycling pilot program begins Feb. 13

Simple Recycling

Did you receive orange bags and a card from Simple Recycling? The Hennepin County/Crystal pilot program begins the week of Feb. 13 – it’s optional and free. Put clothing, shoes and household items in an orange bag and place next to your recycling can. They’ll replace the bag when they pick up.

If you’d rather donate to an organization of your choice, please do so. This is an alternative, and a way to discard old towels, shoes, sheets, etc. that would otherwise end up in a landfill. > Get info on Simple Recycling here.

January 3 Update

My first council meeting was Tuesday, Jan. 3 after being sworn in. West Metro Fire Auxiliary awarded two residents for the Crystal Sparkles holiday lighting contest – congratulations! Council members were appointed as liaisons to various commissions, and I will serve with the Environmental Quality Commission. Replacement equipment and vehicles were approved for purchasing (items approved last year for the 2017 budget). These were big ticket items, but it was very appreciated that they came in 24% under budget.  You can read the full recap at City of Crystal via Facebook.

During announcements, I gave an update on the Jaimes family, who lost their belongings and family pet in a fire the day after Christmas. Neighbors are asking how they can help, and a family friend set up a GoFundMe account. Insurance covered some items, but neither of their older cars lost in the fire. They are staying at a hotel, and hope to return to their rebuilt home in 6 months. The Jaimes are overwhelmed by the outpouring of support. Thank you!

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