Event Recycling & Bin Loan Program

Event Recycling & Bin Loan Program

Are you planning an event and wondering if there is a way to reduce waste? Wake County loans free recycling, composting and trash bins to residents hosting events in Wake County.

The County has 30 portable recycling, composting and trash bins, or "waste stations," available to loan for events, small or large, public or private, from weddings and neighborhood block parties to park festivals and golf tournaments. The waste stations fold flat for easy transportation, include specially labeled bags, and signage to help attendees sort recyclable and compostable materials.

How Does It Work?

Video on how the Event Recycling & Bin Loan Program works
How Does It Work?
Watch this video on the event recycling and bin loan program.
  1. Decide how many bins you need using the guidelines below.
  2. Fill out a reservation form, sign, and submit form a minimum of two weeks prior to event.
  3. Pick up bins from the location indicated in confirmation email.
  4. Set out bins before event.
  5. Recycle, compost and dispose of waste materials after event. 
  6. Return bins to the location indicated in confirmation email.


How many bins or waste stations do I need?

Waste Station
Waste Station

Waste stations should be kept to a minimum to aid servicing:

  • 1–2 waste stations for graduation parties, family reunions or <150 guests
  • 3–4 waste stations for weddings or <300 guests
  • 5–6 waste stations for school/church picnics or <600 guests
  • 7–8 waste stations for park festivals or <1,500 guests

How do I set up a waste station?

It's easy; watch this video to see how the bins are set up.

What do I do with the waste materials collected?

Small amounts of trash and recyclables can be placed in your curbside carts for collection. Please split recycling bags and empty recyclables loose in the cart. Large amounts of trash, recyclables and compostables can be dropped off for FREE at Wake County Convenience Centers.


  • Not all Convenience Center sites accept compostables, please check prior to arrival.
  • Recyclables must be placed loose in the 'mixed recycling' containers at Convenience Centers.
  • When using Convenience Centers in a box truck or dual axle trailer a FREE Trash Pass is required prior to arrival.

What items can I recycle?

The most common recyclable items generated at events include beverage containers such as glass wine and beer bottles, aluminum soda and beer cans, plastic water, soda and wine bottles, and wine and juice boxes. Please ensure recyclables are empty.

What items can I compost?

The most common compostable items generated at events include food scraps, paper napkins, and pizza boxes. Compostable food ware, such as plates, bowls, cups or cutlery labeled "compostable," "BPI Certified Compostable" or with the codes "ASTM D6400 or D6868" can be composted.

Unacceptable Items:

  • Plastic bags, plastic food ware and plastic food packaging are not compostable – please do not put plastic of any kind in a compost bin.
  • Paper cups and paper plates, unless labeled "BPI Certified Compostable" or "ASTM D6400" or "ASTM D6868.
  • Raw meat.

Follow this link to learn more about the items that can be composted at Wake County Convenience Centers.

Additional Information


Specially labeled bags are provided with each bin and come in rolls. Each roll of recycling bags contains five bags. Each recycling bag can hold up to 200 bottles/cans. Each roll of compostable bags contains ten bags. Each compostable bag has been tested to hold 50 lbs. maximum. Remember to monitor bins regularly to avoid contamination and overflows. Please return any unused bags.

Equipment Specifications

One waste station includes a recycling bin, a composting bin, and a trash bin. Each bin weighs 12 lbs. and is comprised of four parts:

  • Frame (largest item measuring 38” x 21” x 3”)
  • Lid 
  • Sign holder
  • Sign

Consider how many bins you are loaning and plan accordingly when you come to pick up. Allow enough time to load equipment. Bring help and/or a cart, if you are loaning a lot of equipment or need assistance loading the equipment. 

Signing the Reservation Form

Note: Completing a reservation form does not guarantee approval. Bins are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Submit your reservation a minimum two weeks prior to pick up. Allow 48 business hours for a response.

The borrower/person on the reservation form must be present at pickup, no exceptions. To loan equipment from Wake County, the borrower is required to sign a reservation form, that states they agree to:

  • Return bins clean (wipe down lids and signs, if dirtied during event)
  • Return bins to the location indicated in the confirmation email
  • Return bins by the date indicated in the confirmation email
  • Recycle, compost and dispose of all waste materials collected accordingly (see above)
  • Return any unused bags 
  • Reimburse Wake County $90 per bin, if lost or damaged beyond use

Contact Us

Education and Outreach Team

Email: recycling@wake.gov