Recycling Beyond the Ipswich Program

Recycling Everyday Items

First, make full use of the municipal curbside recycling program.

Next, get your unwanted items into the hands of people who can use them. Clothing and textiles? Donate them in the box at the transfer station or in the Ecosmith box at any of Ipswich's schools. Additional items are listed below and in the DONATION GUIDE.

Other useful items not listed? Offer them on or Craigslist.

From the Store

Plastic Bags & Film

Plastic bags and film (case wrap, paper towel wrap, etc.) can be recycled! Many grocery and retail stores (Shaw's, Market Basket, Target, Kohl's, Staples, Lowe's) have recycling bins for plastic grocery bags (labeled #2 or #4) and plastic film. Recycle them during your weekly shopping trip, or consider reusing them for some other household purpose. Avoid using them completely by investing in reusable bags, which are available at most grocery and retail stores or online.

Styrofoam (Polystyrene #6)

Reuse these for crafts projects or avoid purchasing them altogether.

From the Office

Computers & Electronics 

At special collection events in May and September, Ipswich organizations offer electronics recycling for a small fee. For curbside pickup, call JRM at 978-536-2500 to schedule and prepay a pickup ($25). Goodwill accepts some electronics (no TVs) at their donation sites. Staples and Best Buy will recycle monitors and computers (for a fee) even if they were not purchased there. Call before you go.

Ink Cartridges

The Winthrop and Doyon elementary schools and Ipswich High School have collection bins for recycling used printer cartridges. The Council on Aging at Town Hall also collects them. Cartridges can be dropped off at Staples and Best Buy as well.


Rechargeable, button-cell and car batteries can be recycled. Tedford's Hardware, Best Buy and Staples will take rechargeable batteries for recycling. Button-cell batteries (watches, hearing aids, remote car starters, etc.) contain mercury and are collected at Town Hall at the Treasurer's office, the Department of Public Works office and the Council on Aging. All batteries, including car batteries, are accepted at the Transfer Station during operating hours. The Massachusetts DEP advises that single-use batteries can be put in your trash, because they no longer contain mercury.

Styrofoam & Other Packing Materials

The best way to recycle packaging materials such as Styrofoam peanuts, bubble wrap, and air pockets is to reuse them. If you have more than you can use, check with the UPS store in Rowley. They will sometimes take these materials for reuse in their business.

From the Closet

Clothing and Other Textiles

Bring your textiles to the American Red Cross donation bin at the Transfer Station or the Ecosmith bin at any of the Ipswich schools. A portion of the proceeds from this bin benefits the environmental clubs and other student initiatives. All textiles (including stained or ripped) must be clean and dry. If you need a pickup, many organizations will pick up your clothing items (see household items, below).

Wire Hangers

Wire hangers in good condition can be returned to the dry cleaner for reuse.

From the Sporting Gear Bin

Sporting Goods

If you have baseball mitts and bats, volleyballs, basketballs, ski equipment, snowboards, weights, etc., consider donating them. Vietnam Vets of America accepts these items. Passback, a donation program of the US Soccer Federation, accepts soccer cleats, balls, shin guards, pads, nets, shirts or shorts, etc.

Sneakers/Athletic Shoes

Items that can still be worn may be put in the collection bin at Ipswich High School. But worn-out shoes can be recycled! Nike collects all brands of worn-out footwear in their Reuse-A-Shoe Program at Nike and Converse locations. (Nike stores with collection bins are located in Boston and Somerville, MA; Kittery and Freeport, ME; and Tilton, Merrimack, and North Conway, NH. Converse outlet stores are in North Andover and Wrentham, MA.) Donated shoes are ground up and used in surfacing athletic courts and playgrounds.

One World Running will send still-wearable shoes to athletes in need in Africa, Latin America, and Haiti.

From the Entertainment Center

Toys & Kids' Items

Again, reuse is your best bet for getting rid of unwanted or outgrown toys and children’s accessories. Share outgrown toys with family members, neighbors, etc. These items (clean and dry) can be dropped off at the Transfer Station in the American Red Cross bin.


Book donations can be placed in the More Than Words bin at the Transfer Station. The Ipswich Public Library will accept small collections of good books that can be resold.

CDs, DVDs and Video Games

Unwanted but still good CDs, video games and DVDs can be donated in the More Than Words collection box at the Transfer Station.


Vinyl records can be donated to Savers (139 Endicott Street) or Goodwill (301 Newbury Street) in Danvers.



Any item at least 60% metal can be brought to the Transfer Station. Household Items: toasters, water heaters, refrigerators, washers, dryers, trash compactors, stoves, space heaters, humidifiers, vacuum cleaners, coffee makers, metal and cast iron sinks, AC units, boilers, metal bed frames, lamps, silverware, pots, pans, exercise equipment. Outside Items: lawn mowers, tools, grills, bikes, metal swingsets, chain link fence, propane tanks with tops off only, metal window frames, and siding. Automotive Items: car batteries, tires with rims only, and metal auto parts.
You will need a beach sticker or Transfer Station permit (free at the Department of Public Works Office).

Household Items

Many organizations, such as Big Brother Big Sister, the Epilepsy Foundation, Vietnam Veterans of America, Salvation Army, and St. Vincent de Paul will pick up reusable household items (small appliances, decorations, linens, etc.) from your home on a schedule or by appointment.

Working Appliances

Goodwill accepts working appliances.


The Ipswich Lions Club collects eyeglasses at the Council on Aging (Town Hall) and in their mailbox in the parking lot of Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church at One Pineswamp Road. The mailbox for eyeglasses is clearly marked and located in the back right corner of the lot, next to the clothing bins. The lenses are reground and are given, along with frames, to people in need.

Cars & Trucks

Several charities in Massachusetts will recycle your car and/or other vehicles, and guidelines for donating are offered by the Attorney General's office. Listed here are some charities that accept vehicle donations, and you can check with your favorite charity to see if they have a program.