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Upcoming Fundraising Events for BARC

Thus far, through 26 days, we have raised $16,677 for our BARC Fire Relief Fund efforts; and are forever grateful to everyone who has contributed thus far. We have still have 4 days left, plus a few events planned in the upcoming weeks to make one last push to reach our goal of $30,000.

From now through February 18th, Mawby Vineyards will be donating $1 for every glass of wine sold in their tasting rooms to BARC. Mawby Vineyards is open Wednesday to Sunday from 12 to 5pm. Check out the Facebook Event here.

Friday, February 16th Nick Beadleston and Lauren Hucek are choosing to turn their 30th birthday celebrations into one celebration fundraiser/party for BARC to help with our fire relief efforts. Nick is a board member at BARC and Lauren is a friend/supporter of BARC and its efforts. The party will be held at The Parlor in Traverse City. There will be food, drinks, live music and a great auction! Learn more about the event on Facebook here.

On Saturday, February 24th, the Village of Grand Traverse Commons is hosting Sips, Soups. & Shoes, a fundraiser to also help with our fire relief efforts. Grab your snowshoes and come enjoy scenic hiking trails, delectable soups, and tasty craft beverages! It will be an afternoon full of great flavors in the great outdoors in Traverse City’s largest park. Learn more about the event on Facebook here.

The last event will be held on Wednesday, February 28th at The Filling Station, for a Beer and Pizza fundraiser. The Filling Station has graciously promised BARC that during the hours of 4pm – Close on the 28th, they will donate $1of every beer & 25% of all pizzas purchased during that time to our fire relief fund. Find more information on Facebook here.

Be sure to find out more information on the upcoming events by reaching out to us or checking out the events on Facebook. If you cannot make any of these fundraising events but would still like to help, donations are still being accepted at or can be mailed in to Bay Area Recycling for Charities,  8025 S. Good Harbor Trail, Cedar, MI 49621.

We are very grateful for the local businesses and people in our community that have decided to team up with us in our fire relief efforts. The money we have received over the past weeks will not go to waste, we plan on coming back stronger than ever. It is still our mission to make Traverse City the greenest city in Michigan!


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Kaleva recycling center ‘not going anywhere’ after fire











KALEVA — After a blaze left most of Kaleva’s Bay Area Recycling for Charities building in ruins on Tuesday afternoon, the company is now searching for ways to continue its mission.

Andy Gale, BARC founder and president, said the nonprofit, which offers comprehensive waste management services and compostable products, is not giving up hope.

The company’s founder said he is determined to work past the devastation, which is now left in ashes.

“We are not going anywhere,” said Gale. “Something started a fire out there. I don’t know what it was, but they are sending (an official) out there to do a full investigation.”

At the time, Gale said BARC was renting the building at 14407 Industrial Drive — which formerly housed NABCO —  and had plans to use a loan to purchase it next week. He said the plan could have brought around 50 to 100 more jobs to the Kaleva area.

More than 20 years ago, NABCO, Inc. held its grand opening celebration at the building, where it re-manufactured starters, alternators and solenoids for the automobile industry. NABCO permanently closed its distribution and production operations in 2006.

In June of 2017, BARC expanded and opened a location for its recycling business at the old NABCO building. Gale started the company nearly 10 years ago with only one truck, which soon grew into one of the largest recycling businesses of its kind in the Midwest.

Working toward a zero-waste vision for society, BARC recycles items like electronics or mattresses, and donates a portion of its profits back to local charities.

“This is the only mattress recycling location in the state of Michigan,” said Gale.

On Tuesday, Manistee County Central Dispatch reported the fire around 3:30 p.m. saying the building was “fully engulfed in flames.” Maple Grove Township Fire Department, along with six additional fire departments, responded to the scene.

Four employees were in the building at the time of the fire; however, all were able to make it out safely.

“The most important thing is that everyone got out safely,” Gale said. “The firefighters contained that fire so well.”

The building was engulfed in thick smoke that later erupted into intense flames, which swallowed the southwest end of the building — destroying the entire loading dock on the west side.

Although the fire was nothing short of a crisis for BARC, Gale said only an eighth of the 82,800 square foot Kaleva Industrial Park building was scorched, leaving plenty of mattresses, electronics and refrigerators untouched.

The rest of the building suffers smoke damage; BARC’s insurance company is currently assessing the damage.

“There was a bit of a miracle, as only 10,000 square feet of that loading dock was burned,” said Gale. “The firefighters kept that fire in that area, so it did not burn the rest of the stuff inside the warehouse part of the building.”

In wake of the fire’s destruction, BARC is now accepting donations from the community to help it carry on its mission.

On its Facebook page, BARC posted a statement: “Many of you have asked what you can do to help. As you can imagine, we will be facing some challenges as we move past this crisis.”

Donations can be made on the Bay Area Recycling for Charities webpage, at or on the Generosity page they have created. Gale said donations help to pay BARC’s employees, the clean-up crews and business overhead.

At this time, the cause of the fire has not yet been determined. Calls to Maple Grove Township Officials, who are heading the investigation, have not been answered.

Article written by Ashlyn Korienek, originally posted on The Manistee News Advocate


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Empire Snowmobile Drag Race 2018 – Zero Waste Event

Fast sleds, food & drinks, live music and good times. Come join the fun at the 3rd Annual Empire Snowmobile Drag Race. BARC will be their, making this our first Zero-Waste event of the New Year!

The Drag Race takes place annually to honor the memory of Empire native and snowmobile lover, Roy Taghon. This year the event will take place Saturday, January 13th from 10 AM to 8 PM at the Empire Airport.

The cost is $10 and children under 12 can enter free! Bring the kids to this family friendly event and experience the thrill of drag racing.

Food and Drinks will be provided by Rockwich Food Truck (Sandwiches that Rock and Kitchens that Roll) as well as Lake Ann Brewing Company.

This will be BARC’s first Zero Waste Event of the year. Which means that virtually every bit of waste at this event is recycled or composted. We are able to do this by having affordable and eco-friendly products that range from compostable serviceware (utensils, plates and cups) to biodegradable garbage bags. Learn More about Zero Waste Events here.

Do you want to get out of the house and in on the action?
Sign up to Volunteer for BARC!

Sign up to Volunteer

We hope to see you there!

For more information on the event itself checkout Empire Chamber of Commerce website

Location: Empire Airport 13264 S Benzonia Trail, Empire, MI 49630
Time: Saturday, January 13th – 10AM to 8PM.

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Let’s work together to make things better in 2018!

A Note from Andy Gale, Founder of Bay Area Recycling for Charities

Dear BARC Supporter:

This holiday season, while reflecting on all you’ve gained over the past year, I’d like you to also take a moment to think about all the things you removed from your life.

As someone who supports BARC’s mission you know that nearly 100% of what you throw away can and should be recycled. Unfortunately, most of the things other people dispose of–from wrapping paper and cardboard to old electronics and food waste may wind up in a landfill.

BARC diligently continues our 9 year mission to reduce our community’s waste stream. In the past 12 months alone, we recycled more than 20,000 mattresses, a million pounds of electronics, and 3,000 refrigeration units. (That’s over 250 semi loads kept from the landfill!)…Not to mention all of the cardboard, paper, plastic, glass, and metal we rescued!

This year BARC took the opportunity to dramatically expand its operations by opening a 80,000 square foot facility in Kalava. This new facility will allow us to grow and develop even more exciting ways to reduce our waste stream.

BARC is also partnering with Michigan Tech and local philanthropists, businesses, environmental organizations to pioneer a new waste to energy process which will transform recycled plastic into green energy that we hope will helping to power our community within the few years. Please inquire if you would like more information on being involved.

But all this waste reduction and progress can only happen when concerned citizens like you continue to support the nonprofit mission of BARC.

Please help BARC raise the capital to keep the whole program running. Recycling markets are down this year and we can not do this on our own. WE NEED YOU NOW!!

Your gift will help create new ways to reduce waste in our community. You can give a tax deductible donation today by visiting our Make-a-Donation page. Together, we will make our community and our region a sustainable example we can all be proud to call home.

Let’s work together to make things better! Help us create a greener tomorrow.

Andrew Gale
Founder, Bay Area Recycling for Charities


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What We Do


BARC is growing and giving! We are always striving to achieve our mission’s objectives of recycling and giving back to the many local non-profit within the our Northern Michigan community. In addition to residential and business recycling, we have grown our services to create a larger impact. We would love your help to push forward on our goal of making Traverse City the greenest city in Michigan.



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