Save those wrapping paper tubes!

Recycled instrument event planned for Earth Day

By Ben Olson
Reader Staff

After Christmas has come and gone and living rooms across town are filled with crumpled ribbons, bows and wrapping paper, the environmentally conscious often try to find a use for all the waste created by this holiday. Members of the local nonprofit environmental organization may have had that in mind when they proposed an event planned for Earth Day 2020 using recycled materials as musical instruments.

The plan is simple: On the week of Earth Day in April 2020, will host an event featuring a parade full of musicians playing instruments made solely from recycled or repurposed objects.

Why are we telling you about this now instead of months down the road? Because wrapping paper tubes make excellent instruments and wants them before you throw them away.

“We’re collecting wrapping paper rolls, paper towel rolls, drums, shakers, cigar boxes… anything we can use to make an instrument out of,” said Terra Langley. Langley and her sister, Tonya Cressey, have spearheaded the Green Team at The Festival at Sandpoint for a dozen years, which sorts and organizes the waste from the concert nights into recyclables, landfill items and compost.

The Earth Day event — currently still in the planning stages — will feature a table of samples of displays for other musical instruments folks have made. This will be a family-friendly event geared toward kids, but everyone is encouraged to take part.

Langley is also interested in seeing if art teachers would like to get involved making instruments from recycled materials.

“We’re trying to inspire other people to go home and make stuff,” Langley said. “It’s not trash. You just have to look at things differently.”

Langley said a movie shown at the library called Landfill Harmonic inspired the group to make this happen.

“They made a whole symphony out of recycled materials,” she said. “It was really cool.”

For those interested in donating materials to the event, Langley said collection sites will be established at the Sandpoint Library and Creations at Sandpoint on the Cedar St. Bridge.

While the event will be engineered to promote recycling and music, Langley sees it from a larger perspective as a way for different people to unite under the common banner of music.

“Everyone can get along with music,” she said. “It doesn’t matter what age you are, what your politics are, any of that stuff — anyone can do music. That’s the theme we’re going for with this event: We can all just get along.”

Those interested in volunteering, making instruments or helping out with the collection process can contact Terra Langley at 208-597-6018.

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