Clean Out Your Garage for a Deluxe Haunted House

When I was a kid, there used to be at least a couple families on the Halloween route that went all-out, converting their garages into mini houses of horror, complete with dry-ice fog, spooky sound effects, and costumed creeps. Only the brave entered, and sometimes even the promise of especially bountiful candy wasn't enough to tempt trick-or-treaters. 

The neighbors. (Photo by  Ján Jakub Naništa  on  Unsplash  )

The neighbors. (Photo by Ján Jakub Naništa on Unsplash )

Nowadays, even if we hovering parents allowed our kids to go in some stranger's garage, what stranger would have room in his garage for such an enterprise? No--now our garages are bursting with unused exercise equipment, broken sports equipment, bicycles, boxes of decorations, boxes still unpacked from our last move, clothes that used to fit or hopefully one day will fit, yard tools, musical instruments, seasonal items, hobby supplies, extra appliances (working and non-working), paint cans, man-cave furnishings, and pet equipment for a pet who may or may not still be with us. If we're lucky (and unusual), we even manage to squeeze in a car.

I have good news for you this Halloween: you may not be able to lure anyone into your garage, but you can do some purging and possibly fit that second vehicle. Because this Saturday, October 28, from 9am-3pm, in the very same parking lot where the Bellevue Farmers Market is held, it's the Residential Recycling Collection Event.

Here's what I'm bringing, that's been sitting in my garage or cluttering up the house or backyard for years:

1. Crappy plastic chairs (including some broken ones).


They're taking "rigid plastics"! Those chairs, sand toys, coolers (!), PVC pipes, and even those ubiquitous sports bottles that every family seems to have three thousand of, plastered with every conceivable logo.

2. Block styrofoam and peanuts.

I hate block styrofoam!!! Every year at Christmas, something arrives in block styrofoam, and the stupid stuff sits in my garage until a recycling event.

3. Dead cell phones and iPods.

Unfortunately this event will not take our old laptop, but peripherals and stereo equipment are fair game. If you still haven't gotten rid of your VCR, let Saturday be the day.

4. Documents that need shredding.

You may bring one 15" x 10" x 12" box worth of documents needing to be shredded. Staples are okay, but please remove binder clips. Ever since my shredder broke, papers have been piling up. I can't wait!

Got a broken microwave? Treadmill? Freezer? Bring it. A worn-out mattress? A boat battery? They'll take it. Event leftover clean wood and tires. Recycle recycle recycle.

The only scary thing you face this Halloween might be that big empty space in your garage!

And one final note: if you're free this Thursday evening, don't forget Bellevue Farmers Market's first annual Happy Hour Fundraiser! Get your tickets here and support our wonderful Market.


10146 MAIN ST, BELLEVUE, WA 98004