Get creative for the Recycled Yard Art Contests.

As you may well know by now, twice each year, we, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Hillsborough County Extension, sponsor Recycled Yard Art Contests, one at the Hillsborough County Fair and one at the Florida State Fair.

The purpose of the Recycled Yard Art Contest is to increase environmental awareness and encourage reuse/recycling of materials into yard art. The competition involves two and three-dimensional art created from items that were already used for their original purpose.

We are looking for entries from all of you with the creative gene or the desire to give it a try. There are four categories for entries: adult; high school, middle school and grade school; individual; or group submissions. Each category has one winner and there is a people’s choice winner, which is the creation that receives the most votes from the public.

Past entries have included many types of items, from metal to glass, tires to fence posts and CDs to footwear. Items need to be able to withstand outdoor elements, must be ready for installation and should weigh less than 40 pounds.

It is time to stop pondering and start creating your submissions. The Hillsborough County Fair starts on October 17 and runs from Thursday to Sunday, October 17-20 and October 24-27. Entries need to be delivered to the Hillsborough County Fairgrounds on SR 60 and 215 Sydney Washer Rd. in Dover, east of Valrico, on Saturday, October 12 between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. or Monday, October 14 between the hours of 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

First place award winners in each category will receive a gift basket filled with items to help you practice Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ principles. All of the contest-winning entries will be on display at the UF/IFAS Extension office, located at 5339 CR 579 in Seffner, and possibly at the Hillsborough County Center in Tampa, for one month after the contest ends and fair closes.

Entries must be accompanied by an entry form which includes the participant’s name, address, telephone number, etc. You can access the entry form at:

And the rules are at:

For more information, contact Lisa Meredith at 744-5519 x54146 or Thanks for reducing, reusing, recycling and repeating.

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