PHILADELPHIA – This year’s annual Penn Relay Carnival will feature a new competition: shoe recycling. Organizers of the iconic event have teamed with Community Recycling, a Philadelphia-based social-conscious enterprise, to launch a shoe recycling competition among all participating teams, April 23-25.  

The Penn Relays teams, friends and families are encouraged to bring their gently used shoes to the Community Recycling Booth, inside the Palestra at the Health and Fitness Expo, April 23 and 24 from 8am – 6:30pm, and April 25 from 8am – 5:30pm. All recycled shoes will be sent and reused by people in more than 50 countries around the globe as part of Community Recycling’s Shoebox Recycling program. Each team’s collection will be tallied at the end of the program. The top three performers will be awarded Reuse Certificates and a one-of-a-kind CR Recycled Map of the World handmade from recycled materials by micro entrepreneurs from around the globe.

Participants can also connect with their “SoleMate”: the future owner of their shoes, by writing a “SoleMate Note” and including it in their recycled shoes. Recyclers can trace the path their shoes will take to meet their new feet. All participating teams will also receive a sustainability report.

We’re thrilled to offer our ShoeBox Recycling program as a friendly, green competition within the most iconic event in Philadelphia,” said Ira Baseman, president of Community Recycling. “CR’s Shoebox Recycling takes the simple act of recycling shoes and turns it into an engaging experience while reducing waste in our landfills, with the added incentive of winning beautiful, recycled maps.” 

The annual Penn Relay Carnival is expected to draw more than 100,000 fans to the University of Pennsylvania’s Franklin Field, according to event organizers. The Penn Relays is the oldest and largest track and field competition in the U.S, offering a festival of food, crafts and souvenirs along the streets that surround the field stadium.



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