Baseball, Hotdogs, Apple Pie, and Recycling?

sox baseballIt’s a bang-up baseball season here in the Windy City.  With both the Cubs and the Sox in first place (hopefully my writing this won’t jinx my home teams), everyone is talking about baseball almost as much as we are talking about our favorite son (Obama) and attendance at the ballparks is at capacity.  Adding to all the excitement, US Cellular Field, the home of the White Sox is hitting home runs with its recycling effort.

If I take you out the ballpark and buy you some peanuts and crackerjack, what happens to the wrappers?  Most likely, they will end up in a US Cellular Field recycling bin.  “What we can recycle, we do,” explained Greg Hopwood, assistant director of operations at US Cellular Field.  Not only can kids pick up cups and redeem and head to home plate after a game to redeem them for coupons, cleaning crews are pretty vigilant about putting proper items in recycling bins rather than in trash bins when they do the final days’ clean up.  Glass, cups, aluminum cans–these all end up in recycling bins.  Cardboard boxes are also recycled, and the office staff recycles paper routinely.

“We try extremely hard; we’re very green here,” explained Mr. Hopwood.

We Chicagoans have many reasons to be proud of our teams, our favorite candidate for President, and the recycling underway at our South Side ballpark.

Photo from my own collection.

About the Author

In trying to find the most effective way to help other people reduce their carbon footprints, Sarah turned to one of her favorite activities: writing. She started a green business,, to help her clients plan newsletters for their eco-friendly businesses. She also started her blog,, to provide useful advice to anyone who wants to lead a more environmentally friendly life. She also regularly contributes to, to let other Chicagoans know about eco-friendly stores, restaurants, and events.

Sarah, an internal medicine doctor, works part-time in community health centers in the Chicago area. She graduated from Barnard College and Columbia University, and she lives in Evanston, IL, with her daughter and her husband. Stop by some time for some delicious, sustainable food–Sarah and her husband love to cook and entertain–any extras will end up outback in their composter.

  • Robert Lovinger

    Perhaps the best, least expensive, & lowest impact way to get change is to change people’s attitudes, so that things like recycling are part of the culture rather than a response to laws & penalties. It is slower but because it is embedded in attitudes, it is resistant to erosion if law are changed.

  • sara

    oh, the shame of having the south siders outdo the (supposedly) hipper, elitist north siders!!

  • DFL

    I had no idea the White Sox were so green. Maybe a name change is in order? But honestly, it’s good to hear that large, corporate employers have gotten the message, if only for PR.