Fun season.

While fire season is here and is no joke as we all know–especially these folks–we like to call this time of year “fun season.” Why? Because River City Roots Fest & Spontaneous Construction, of course. Both iconic Missoula events are coming up, both are working toward Zero Waste, and both rely on volunteers to make the party happen.

Roots Fest starts next Friday August 24. Sign up for a volunteer shift with the River City Roots Green Team and check out our man Brody play some good old bluegrass and more with Good Old Fashioned at 2:30 p.m. that day.

SponCon is on Saturday September 15. Register your team or send Matt an email at to volunteer to help with everything from set-up, to Zero Waste, to creative reuse activities, and more.

After all, both events are more fun when you’re there.

Sustainable Missoula: River City Roots Festival needs you on the Green Team

By Chase Jones, the City’s Energy Conservation and Climate Action Coordinator, and Britt Holewinski, the City’s AmeriCorps Energy Corps Service Member.

Each year, the River City Roots Festival brings our community together and shares the magic of Missoula with not only locals but also with those who’ve traveled from far and wide. With incredible live music, art, culture, and fun for everyone, this festival is a great way to showcase everything that makes Missoula so great.

Join in the fun Friday and Saturday August 24-25, 2018, downtown Missoula.

A cornerstone of our community is our commitment to sustainability, which is why Climate Smart Missoula and the city of Missoula lead the charge on the green scene each year, ensuring the festival is as climate and waste smart as possible.

The Roots Festival has committed to reducing the carbon footprint of the festival while improving the health of our planet, our community, and festival attendees. From expanding zero waste options, to sustainable commute options, to protecting natural resources, the 2018 River City Roots Festival is dedicated to responsibly throwing Missoula’s best party….Read the entire article at

Best in show.

We have a winner! Pictured here is the Best In Show and Best Use Of The Fair Theme winning exhibit, Mission To Zero, by our own Bo Muhsam and Stella Allen. The exhibit embodies both creative reuse and the fair theme of “Pioneering the Future.” Congratulations Bo and Stella!

We’ve just been having a blast down at the Fair these last few days thanks to the exhibitors who sent this division into orbit with their choice of materials, creativity, and craftsmanship. We’re biased, but we think this entire division is single-handedly “pioneering the future.” Stop by the Home Arts building to see for yourself.

And thanks to our judges—MadeFair Marketplace maven Courtney BlazonMCPS Zero Waste Steering Committee member and Board Trustee Mike Smith, and former winner of Best in Show in this division Steve Weiler—who had the tough job of deciding which of these fair creations got the ribbons and rosettes this year.

More hands-on Fair fun! Bring the kiddos again to join Katie, our Energy Corps service member, on Sunday starting at 11 a.m. in the Commercial Building Make & Take booth for the Creative Reuse Make & Take Challenge!

Worthy of much fanfare.

The Western Montana Fair opens on Tuesday, August 7th at 5 p.m. as do the doors of the Home Arts building. That’s where you’ll find the Creative Reuse Division and more than 40 creative reuse exhibits from furniture to jewelry to toys to sculpture exploring the potential of reused materials.

Hands-on Fair fun! Bring the kiddos down and join Katie, our Energy Corps service member, from 6-7 p.m. on Wednesday and 1-2 p.m. on Thursday at the Kids Corner for Paint-a-Tile, a free creative reuse activity!

ZERO by FIFTY update! On Wednesday, the Missoula Zero Waste Plan passed out of Parks & Conservation committee with a unanimous vote! While this is an historic moment for Missoula and the state of Montana, the plan will be on the consent agenda at Monday’s City Council meeting and will likely be adopted without much fanfare. Check out the latest articles from the MissoulianMissoula Current, and Green Matters.

ZERO by FIFTY in committee!

Remember way back in 2015 when we helped make MUD’s 9th annual Earth Day Celebration Missoula’s first Zero Waste event? Then in 2016 when we stewarded Missoula’s Zero Waste Resolution to adoption? Well, this week marked another watershed moment for Zero Waste in Missoula when, together with Chase Jones, we presented the ZERO by FIFTY: MIssoula’s Pathway to Zero Waste Plan to the Parks & Conservation committee. Read this Missoula Current article and this Missoulian article. Several committee members voiced full support of the plan and time ran short so it will be on the committee agenda again next Wednesday 8/1.

Now is the time for public comment! So many of you worked with us to get here. If you’ve got something to say about why you believe in a Zero Waste Missoula then we invite you to attend the meeting and add your voice to this historic moment. Click here for more info on committee meeting next Wednesday morning 8/1.

Looking for another way to engage in a Zero Waste Missoula? Volunteers still needed for the Creative Reuse Division at the Western Montana Fair. Exchange your time for goodies like fair foodbucks or rodeo tix!

Sustainable Missoula: Making the case for Zero Waste by 2050

By Bradley Layton, a licensed professional engineer, entrepreneur and affiliated faculty member at the University of Montana.

The Treasure State has a long history of bringing its rare and precious buried materials from the Earth’s bowels to its skin to share with global industries. Our timber industry has also blessed the world with raw materials for homes, furniture, paper goods and fuel.

Once these precious metals such as gold, copper, lead, zinc and silver become machines and infrastructure, our woody biomass has been converted into napkins, and our coal, oil and gas have become plastics, lubricants and fuels, where do they go?

As we are well aware, the combusted carbon fuels find their way to the air and ocean, along with an alarming amount of plastic. But what of your used tree-sourced tissue? Your gold-mined cellphone? Your oil-originated grocery bag?

As Montana’s economy continues to grow and our technologies continue to evolve, so do the number of challenges surrounding the fate of our waste. But today, as Missoula poises for a thoughtful dive into a citywide plan to reduce what goes into our local landfill by 90 percent by 2050, opportunities abound. Missoula has the brains, the will and the commitment to make great progress during the next 32 years to meet the goal…..Read the entire article at

Reuse builds community.

Monique from the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes gifted us a sample of a youth art project she and her colleagues recently facilitated. Kids came together to make beautiful artistic coasters on tiles we supplied through our Materials Giving Program. She left with another basketful destined for an activity on Tuesday as part of a No Kid Hungry Montana in Action tour. We are happy to play even a teeny roll in such a noble effort.

We know many noble efforts exist in our community. Maybe we can provide supplies to yours, too. Come in and sign up for our Materials Giving Program, which is open to schools, faith-based organizations, non-profits, and community events.

Last call for exhibitors! Enter your upcycled projects in the Creative Reuse Division at the Western Montana Fair! Accepting furniture, sculpture, jewelry, textiles, and more! Online registration is open until 5 pm on July 26th.

Calling all contractors & retailers!

We believe building materials belong in our community, not the landfill. That’s why if you’ve got overages, misorders, or useable demo, we’ve got a solution.

Home ReSource provides a FREE service for contractors and retailers.

  • We track tax-deductible materials donations
  • We offer promotional opportunities within Missoula’s thriving reuse community (like shout-outs in these emails and in our social media)
  • We provide materials pick-up

So if you or someone you know wants to partner up on materials reuse, give Matt a shout at 541-8301. We’ll send John over to shake on it (like he did over at Boyce Lumber).

Sustainable Missoula: Missoula schools, Home ReSource partner for Zero Waste MCPS

By Hatton Littman, communications director for Missoula County Public Schools.
Published in Missoula Current, June 29, 2018

In the 2017-18 school year, Missoula County Public Schools started a partnership with Home ReSource and the city of Missoula to create a Zero Waste Steering Committee whose main charge is to develop district goals that will align with the city’s ZERO by FIFTY Initiative.

The committee, made up of classified and certified staff, administrators, students and trustees started meeting in February and concluded their work together in June. Their recommendations were presented to the MCPS Board of Trustees on Tuesday, June 26 at the regularly scheduled board meeting. The idea is that the district will begin implementing some of the strategies in the 18-19 school year….Read the entire article at