By Stephen Dafoe
Morinville – A local woman is hoping boxes, cartons and other by-products of Christmas gift giving will be given a second life as works of creative art before ending up in the recycling box. Stacey Buga is organizing The Battle of the Boxes, the first of what she hopes will be a recurring recycling event.
“The Battle of the Boxes is hopefully going to be an annual event to encourage community involvement and getting into recycling, playing, toys and what a gift needs to be,” Buga explained, adding the competition is looking to have people take their left over Christmas and Boxing Day packaging and convert it into creative works. “After Christmas there’s some very cool packaging and stuff that can be used in amazing ways if people just look at it a little bit differently.”
Buga explained the concept is simple. Take left over packaging materials and turn it into whatever can be imagined. Using scissors, glue, tape and special Makedo fasteners, the packaging can be converted to a work of art ready to enter the competition. “I’m going to be supplying Makedo kits, which are a set of fasteners and hinges that’s made for cardboard, plastic, fabric – basically any recycled materials,” she said. “It can be used along with tape or nails or whatever people can think of. They just basically use whatever they’ve got. The idea is to not have to go out and purchase things.”
The Battle of the Boxes is open to individuals and businesses. Registration deadline for the contest is Dec. 22, giving participants a couple weeks over the holidays to assemble their creations for display at the Morinville Community Library Jan. 8 to 12. Entries are to be dropped off at the library Jan. 4 and 5 so library staff can set up the displays for judging the following week.
“It will be judged by the community and library patrons,” Buga said, adding there are a limited number of entry spots. “At this point we are hoping for about 30 entries total. I’m hoping for a 50/50 split between businesses and individuals. If we get a lot of interest, we will see what we can do about adding more spots.”
Entries will be assembled into four categories: Children’s Choice, Patron’s Pick, The Most Useable, and TKO [Technical Knock Out]. Buga said the Most Useable category is not necessarily for the most useful creation but the most useable. The TKO is reserved for those entries that are particularly intricate or technical in their design. Prizes will be awarded for each of the four contest categories.
Buga is hoping people will take a little time over the holidays to get creative with their Christmas packaging. She sees it as something suitable for both children and adults to get involved with. “Adults need to play because they don’t,” she said. “All of a sudden you hit this age where you are supposed to be grown up and you’re supposed to be cool and you’re not supposed to play. Why not? Cardboard boxes are really fun.”
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There is a $50 entry fee for businesses interested in entering – $30 if they donate a prize to the competition. Entry fee for non-profit groups is $30. Entry fees are to cover the cost of the larger Makedo kits. There is no fee for individuals of families to enter. Additional kits are available at This & That in Morinville.
Entry forms are available at the Morinville Community Library. For more information contact Stacey Buga at 780-940-5276.