Where to Recycle Items

in the Rennselaer County Area

Questions/Edits/Comments? Email eco-team@fumceg.org

Athletic Shoes

  • Nike's Reuse-A-Shoe program recycles athletic shoes at the end of their life, giving them a new life through Nike Grind. Up to 10 pairs of used shoes may be dropped off at a Nike retail store. The closest is the Nike Factory Store at Lee Premium Outlets, 50 Water St, Lee, MA 01238 [(413) 243-1861]. They accept any brand of athletic shoes, but are unable to recycle sandals, dress shoes, boots, or shoes with metal (like cleats or spikes). Nike Grind is made from recycled sneakers, plastic bottles and manufacturing scraps from Nike’s factories. Old shoes, collected through the company’s Reuse-A-Shoe program, are sliced into three parts and then ground into rubber bits, foam or a fluffy fiber. Besides using the materials in the company’s own products, Nike sells them to buyers who use them to line running tracks, playgrounds, gym and weight room floors and carpet underlay.
  • Soles4Souls. New or gently-used athletic shoes. Drop-off to DSW, Crossgates Mall.


  • Home Depot. Portable rechargeable batteries – those batteries commonly found in traditional household items. Rechargeable batteries can be found in cordless power tools, cell and cordless phones, laptops, digital cameras, two-way radios, camcorders, remote control toys and other portable electronics.
  • Big Green Box. Alkaline, Nickel Cadmium, small Lithium and other household batteries. Batteries can't be damaged, defective or recalled. Automotive batteries are excluded. Each box is limited to 43 lbs and costs $63. https://biggreenbox.com.
  • Ocean State Job Lot. All of their New York stores have battery recycling boxes. They send most batteries to be recycled except for the following: batteries weighing over 11 lbs., wet cell batteries, car batteries, lithium ion batteries over 300 watt hours, lithium primary batteries with over 25 grams of lithium content, and batteries that cannot fit in their collection box.


Books, CDs, DVDs, & Audiobooks on CD

Building Supplies

  • Habitat for Humanity ReStore accepts donated new and used building materials, furniture, appliances, lighting fixtures and other home goods, and they sell them in our stores to raise money for Habitat home-building projects. At 70 Fuller Rd., Albany, NY 12205, (518) 275-6638, www.habitatcd.org.

Cell Phones

  • Staples, 600 North Greenbush Road,, Rensselaer, NY 12144 (518) 283-3039
  • Other locations, see https://earth911.com/ [Advise that you call to confirm recycling locations]

Christmas/Holiday Cards

  • Recycling Christmas Cards: Cards with NO glitter can be put in Single Stream recycling containers for curbside pick-up.
  • Reuse your cards in multiple ways; as gift tags for next year, cut up as decorative hanging garland for your tree, cut in cookie cutter shapes and attach to yarn or string, cut out images and use to decorate bags, boxes and paper for gifts, make new cards by cutting images and adhering to plain paper.
  • Many nursing homes, senior centers, prisons, etc. accept cards for craft projects with their residents. (Check with them first.)
  • St. Jude’s Ranch for Children (100 St. Jude Street, Boulder City, NV 89005) has a ‘Recycled Christmas Card Program’ (no Hallmark, Disney or American Greetings, https://www.stjudesranch.org/contribute) OR mail to: Earthworks Sys, Inc. 33200 Bainbridge Rd,Suite E, Salem, OR 44139

Christmas/Holiday Lights

  • You can drop off your old holiday light strands at the Service Desk at Lowe’s on Rte. 9W, or at Home Depot.
  • You can also recycle your broken lights at the Ben Weitsman Scrap Metal yard, 300 Smith Blvd., Albany, 12202. Phone 518/462-4444.
  • HOLIDAYLEDS.COM CHRISTMAS LIGHTS RECYCLING PROGRAM – send old lights for recycling and they will send you a 15% off Holiday LEDS.com coupon for new Christmas LED lights. Ship by least expensive method with NO packing material, only the lights, to: HOLIDAY LEDS RECYCLING, 13400 Watertown Plank Rd., Suite 34, Elm Grove, WI 53122

Clothing (Good), Household Items, & More

  • Anchor Food Pantry and Thrift Store. Behind Riverside Nursing Home, Castleton-on-Hudson, New York, (518) 732-4120
  • Church Of The Redeemer Thrift Shop, 1249 3rd St., Rensselaer, NY 12144. (518)283-6711
  • Unity House, “ReStyle” at 2431 Sixth Avenue, Troy, NY, (518) 274-2607, www.unityhouse.org
  • Capital City Rescue Mission. Most Needed Items: Toiletries, underwear/socks for men, women, children (new preferred), men’s footwear, seasonal clothing, children’s clothing (infant/toddler – size 20), small appliances in good working condition. Drop-off location: 127 Arch St, Albany, NY 12202. Contact: 259 South Pearl Street, Albany, NY 12202, (518) 462-0459, givinghope@albanymission.com.
  • Goodwill at 720 Hoosick Rd, Troy, NY 12180, (518) 272-8451.


Crafts, Creative Reuse

  • See https://www.reusethisbag.com. Offers ideas such as bracelets, paint brushes, or seed pollinators from toothbrushes; bread crumbs, summer pudding or french toast from stale bread; garden sprinklers, bird feeders, garden pots from plastic bottles and many more creative ideas.
  • See https://sassytownhouseliving.com. Offers creative uses for hangars, grater, boots, old china, suitcases, clothespins and more.

Eyeglasses & Hearing Aids

  • Empire Visionworks, 622 Columbia Turnpike, East Greenbush
  • Albany & Troy Lions Club, There are numerous drop-off sites in the area. Check with your service providers. Contact: PO Box 192, Troy, NY 12181, (518) 512-2722, info@albanytroylions.org.

Fabric, Yarn and other sewing and needlework

  • Up-Stitch is a nonprofit creative reuse organization that collects donated fabric, yarn, and other sewing and needlework materials to distribute and sell back to the crafting community at an affordable rate. We endeavor to keep useful material out of landfills, facilitate creativity and increase environmental awareness throughout the Capital District. See http://www.up-stitch.com or call (518) 618-2825.

Food Waste

  • Natural Upcycling is a scraps/organics collection company that serves organizations. Their focus is to collect organic or food waste and turn it into a renewable resource – such as electricity or natural gas – through a process called anaerobic digestion. They create a customized program for waste disposal that meets each organization’s needs, large or small. Their clients include: restaurants, grocery stores, hospitals, universities/schools, cafeterias, food manufacturers and food distribution centers. Natural Upcycling‘s services include pickup in bins (provided either by us or customer), large containers, or the client can deliver to the AD site in large containers. Contact: 585.584.3124. Website: http://naturalupcycling.com/.
  • FoodScraps360 is a residential food waste collection service created to help reduce the amount of plant matter from entering the municipal landfill where it produces methane, a potent greenhouse gas. With the climate crisis knocking on our door, we need to change our habits to reduce our carbon footprint. Composting household food scraps is an easy way to take a step in that direction. Costs include purchase of a bin and a monthly service charge. Contact: 518.952.0360. Website: https://foodscraps360.com/.

Furniture and furnishings

  • Troy Area United Ministries (TAUM) in Troy. TAUM meets the immediate needs of homeless persons, women and dependent children fleeing domestic violence, persons living with HIV/AIDS, youth, those who are food insecure, and low income persons. Contact: 518-274-5920. Website: https://taum.org/the-furniture-program/. They have a truck and will pick up.
  • ReStore of Habitat for Humanity of the Capital District, on Fuller Road in Albany. Accepts donated new and used building materials, furniture, appliances, lighting fixtures and other home goods, and sells them to raise money for Habitat home-building projects. Free pickups for large, multi-item donations. Contact: 518-275-6638. Website: http://www.habitatcd.org/restore/
  • Capital Region Furniture Bank, Homeless and Travelers Aid Society. Accepts gently-used furniture by collecting it from the community for individuals and families moving out of homelessness or fleeing domestic violence. Contact: 518-612-2265. Website: http://www.hatas.org/capitalregionfurniturebank.php



Packaging Materials and Polystyrene foam (Styrofoam)

  • Shelter Enterprises Inc., 8 Saratoga Street, Cohoes. M-F, 8 am - 3 pm, accepts Styrofoam. Ggo to office off parking lot, 518-237-4100. Styrofoam must be clean and free of debris like staples and tape. Styrofoam used for food packaging, like coffee cups, meat trays and takeout containers are not accepted. SEI grinds polystyrene to fluffy foam material, places into chamber, compacts it into long stakes, knots into a ball of compacted polystyrene and sends it to companies that recycle it; eg. Berga Recycling or Eco Development.
  • The UPS Stores accept other packaging materials. At 740 Hoosick Rd, Troy, New York 12180, (518) 244-8899 and 911 Central Ave Westgate Plaza, Albany, NY 12206, (518) 458-8181.

School Supplies, Toys, Etc.

  • Boys and Girls Clubs of Albany, 21 Delaware Avenue, Albany, New York, 12210, (518) 462-5528, www.bgcalbany.com
  • Boys and Girls Club of Troy, 1700 7th Ave, Troy, New York 12180, (518) 274-3781, www.bgctroy.org.

Other items, try one of following links