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"Salvage crawl" stresses conserving pieces for your home, and keeping down landfill burdens

"Salvage crawl" offers homeowners environmental decoration alternatives
"Salvage crawl" offers homeowners environmental decoration alternatives 04:50

MINNEAPOLIS -- For your next home improvement project, Hennepin County hopes you'll consider shopping salvage and thrift. All month long they're hosting a "salvage crawl" to showcase re-use retailers across the metro, to ultimately keep more stuff out of the landfill. And WCCO did a mini crawl ourselves and found true treasures for a steal.

At Wood from the Hood in Minneapolis, every piece has a history.

"A lot of our slabs have zip codes on them of where they actually come from, and a lot of the wood is from Minneapolis – its typically within 10 miles," Rick Siewert said.

Siewert and his team turn toppled trees into quality pieces.

"All the wood here you see is actually within five miles of the building here. It's been reclaimed by the city of Minneapolis," Siewert said.

Taking what would be scrapped and turning it into statement pieces built to last.

"We love it. That's our whole story, is we started this back in 2008 to get that stuff out of the landfill," Siewert said.

Just next door, at Better Futures MN, shoppers can give quality appliances, light fixtures, flooring and cabinets a second life. The organization does full and partial deconstruction of homes, using stuff that is found from anything from foreclosures to multi-million dollar condominiums.

The purpose behind their work is twofold. The primary mission is workforce development -- they work with a population of men who have been incarcerated. For many, it's their first full-time job after being released.

The second mission for the company is, of course, environmental. They're in the midst of a two-year project to divert 15,000 tons from Minnesota landfills.

One person's trash is another person's treasure, and the inventory at these shops is constantly changing, so having the crawl throughout the month gives folks a chance to get out explore the shops.

Also part of the crawl is Habitat for Humanity's ReStore. Taken altogether, organizers say it's like having a Black Friday sale any given day of the year.

If you participate in the crawl, you should know that you can win prizes. If you visit the shops you can enter to win a $100 gift card to one of the participating retailers; there are several $50 gift cards too.

You can also win a membership to the Minnesota Tool Library. You scan the code during checkout; the more shops you visit the higher your chance of winning.

They're really promoting building materials, and not just furniture or paintings but flooring and lighting. The greenest building material is the one that already exists.

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