Don't throw your old sneakers away, donate them. Otsego County residents can now drop off used athletic shoes for recycling at two new locations in the Cooperstown area through a partnership thanks to the Otsego County Conservation Association and the Oneonta YMCA. The new sneaker drop-off sites are the Clark Sports Center and the Cooperstown Farmers’ Market.  Sneakers can still be dropped off at the Oneonta Family YMCA on Ford Ave.

Why should be bother recycling sneakers?  According to OCCA Executive Director, Leslie Orzetti, "Recycling athletic shoes is an easy way to help keep these hard to break-down items out of our landfills."

So that makes for three locations now for sneaker drop-off. Just look for a specially marked bin for shoes at any one of the sites. Types of shoes that can be dropped off for recycling include any type of sneaker, as well as rubber soccer and baseball cleats. Shoes can be any condition: new, gently used, or unwearable, but pairs must be complete.

The shoes will end up getting shipped to Got Sneakers in Miami, Florida. The ones in good condition will be distributed to less fortunate people in South and Central America, the Caribbean, west Africa and Europe. Shoes considered to be 'unwearable' get recycled into various products, including athletic surfaces such as tracks and playgrounds.

This program also benefits the Oneonta YMCA since they get reimbursed for each pair of shoes received.  It's a win-win all around.  For more information on Got Sneakers, visit

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