By John Anderson

This article’s headline might fit well in the checkout lane at a grocery store, but garbage is a serious business. Seriously. And, the Town of Auburn takes is seriously as well. Along with trash, Auburn also takes recycling seriously.

According to Amy Sullivan, Auburn’s Recycling Coordinator, Auburn did well enough to earn a grant from the Recycling Dividends Program administered by the Department of Environmental Protection. Consequently, all grade 3-5 students in Auburn got to view a great presentation “Garbage is My Bag.” Auburn Mass Daily caught up with creator Jack Golden at Pakachoag Elementary on Monday. The program was previously presented at Julia Bancroft.

Golden uses techniques from his past as a mime, juggler, and clown to entertain and educate young audiences. He has developed four environmental programs to educate young people, and he does this well.

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Every 20 seconds or so, Golden interjects a bit of humor or Vaudeville skill to keep the children engaged. Audience participation is also skillfully used to build the relationship between the students and the subject. On Monday it was recycling and composting.

Golden plays “Dr. T with a PhD in Garbology” during the performance which has evolved nicely since its inception in 1989. The Environmental Protection Agency even selected this program for its national EPA Administrators Award for solid waste programs.

It is likely that some parents might get a little education from their children after the show. All can learn more about the topics. Sullivan said that multi-unit housing like condominiums still fall short in recycling since they are not serviced by the local solid waste contractor. Ideas to improve are being explored.

Composting is also underutilized by many families, and Auburn has plenty of compost bins available for purchase. Contact the Health Department if you are interested, 508-832-7703. Sullivan can also be reached on Tuesday mornings at 508-832-7704 X216.

While at Pakachoag, the remnants of a teacher appreciation luncheon with a nicely done Red Sox theme were also visible in the library, and a few shots are included in the slide show. Many students and faculty wore their Red Sox shirts on their opening day.