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Old tires make dreams come true in Stirling



Bruce and Greg Woodbeck own and operate Woodbecks Auto Parts in Stirling, Ontario. On May 28 they opened the gates of their auto recycling business to accepted tires of all shapes and sizes for six days. The recycling fees they usually receive will be donated to The Sunshine Foundation, a national organization that makes children's dreams come true. Photo by Gail Paquette

By Gail Paquette

The same group of people in Stirling, Ontario who made Hockeyville a reality are now helping to make dreams come true for children.

Teaming up with Woodbecks Auto Parts, the Stirling Hockeyville committee started to collect old tires for the Tire Take Back event, a province-wide six-day, tire-recycling crusade sponsored by The Ontario Auto Recycling Association.

The goal is to not only to recycle thousands of tires but to also raise funds for the Sunshine Foundation of Canada, a national charity fulfilling individual dreams of children with severe physical disabilities, such as spinal bifida or cerebral palsy, as well as life-threatening illnesses.

Last year, members of the OARA raised enough to send a planeload of children to Disneyland” said Greg Woodbeck, an owner of Woodbecks. Founded in 1939 by Burton Woodbeck, the auto parts business in Stirling is still family owned and operated.

There is further incentive to salvage the old tires. The community who gathers the most receives 15 thousand worth of recycled tire products from the Ontario Tire Stewardship, a non-profit corporation, responsible for recycling Ontario’s tires.

Before OTS was established tires often ended up in landfills, on the sides of roads and being burned, now they are becoming garden mulch, patio tiles, door mattsand hockey arena matts.

Out of the 75 OARA members across Ontario, Woodbecks collected the most tires last year with 4012 and this year if the Hockeyville committee has their way they will take the title again.

We were able to chose, a non-profit community project,” said Woodbeck.

The committee approached Woodbecks when they heard of the prize and asked them what it would take to win. If they do, the Stirling arena will be equipped with recycled rubber matting throughout.

The Hockeyville committee went through their channels and is donating a lot of their time to this,” said Woodbeck. “We are like that, put a challenge in front of anybody in this town and they’re going to win it.”

The more tires they collect the more children dreams they can make happen.

It takes 3,730 used tires to make just one dream according to the Ontario Tire Stewardship.