Upcycle Ohio and The Makerspace: Turning Athens’ Garbage into Gold

Upcycling and reusing materials began in Appalachia. The area’s history of poverty has forced residents to be creative. Taking things apart and using them for other purposes was a requirement for survival. While most people don’t think about the things they throw away, Appalachians are constantly thinking about ways to create something new with something used.

Enter Upcycle Ohio.

Upcycle Ohio began Sept. 2020 with its grand opening in Athens, Ohio. Located off W. Union street, the eco-friendly business prides itself on its zero-waste policy. They accept single-use plastics, cardboard, bottle caps and other things the everyday person would throw away. Then, each item is converted to serve a secondary purpose. The symbiotic thrift store and “Makerspace” create one powerhouse for collecting Athens’ donations and garbage. The staff members work closely with Upcycle’s partners, including Rural Action, to keep the Appalachian tradition of upcycling alive. Click through the photos below to see UpCycle in action:

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