The Metropolitan Environmental Trust has selected the Gentleman of the Road, Guthrie Event as the 2013 Recycling & Composting Event of the Year. Each year, the M.e.t. honors Oklahoma’s outstanding recycling individuals and organizations at the America Recycles Day Banquet. “The Guthrie concert was a big deal for Oklahoma. It exposed tens-of-thousands of people to alternative methods of waste management that go beyond just pushing waste to a landfill,” said Fenton Rood of the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality. “This event helped to drive both the market development and cultural awareness of composting in the State of Oklahoma,” added Rood. With over 30,000 in attendance, the Gentlemen of the Road event recycled over 18.5 tons and composted over 5.5 tons of postconsumer food waste and compostable paper products.
England’s Grammy Award Winning Mumford & Sons toured 4 North American cities this year in a dynamic weekend music and camping festival called The Gentlemen of the Road. The Gentlemen of the Road Guthrie Stopover was a flagship event modelling the opportunities of event waste management. The Stopover was a very unique event for the small city of Guthrie, with a population of 10,216. Sereniah Breland, City Manager for the City of Guthrie said, “Guthrie was excited to host Mumford & Sons and we are thrilled that the organizers of the event took efforts to the next level with an integrated waste program.” With plans to return the compost collected as nutrient rich soil to Guthrie in the spring, the project coordinators intend to raise the level of awareness around composting and highlight the opportunity waste represents towards soil building. “As recent headlines in the news may indicate, the growing of local food is vital to the future of our cultures’ health. Before you can have local food, you need to find opportunities to build the soil and composting represents that opportunity” said Master Gardener Mark Spradlin who has helped to lead the Guthrie Community Garden and is the Mayor of Guthrie. Spradlin added, “Due to the local composition of our dirt and the amount of clay it contains, it often makes for better cement than garden soil. Using an event like the Gentlemen of the Road to stimulate the theory and practice of
composting benefits the entire community, and future generations.”
The Compost Council, an independent group that facilitates waste management solutions for events and festivals, handled the event waste management contract. The Compost Council worked in partnership with Minick Materials, Waste Connections, Fertile Grounds, and Event Productions Inc. for various components of the event needs. Project leader Nick Algee added, “The producers of the Stopover, Jam Productions and Jay Goldberg Events & Entertainment opened the door for this opportunity and recognize this as the future of large scale event production. It was important that we employed locals and companies of Oklahoma to meet our objectives. We are thrilled to be honored with this award from the M.e.t., and our hope is that more communities in Oklahoma see the opportunity of composting and soil building as a reality.”