Guide for Recycling at Events

Recycling Rules

Good music, food, and drinks draw people to summer events in Sioux Falls, but what happens to all the waste being created?

According to the City event application and ordinance, event organizers are responsible for providing recycling at Sioux Falls events.

Many events like Cinco De Mayo, Jazzfest, Hot Harley Nights, Riverfest, and more have made recycling a priority with the Ecomaniacs, a nonprofit group who picks up litter and promotes recycling. These events recycle 30-50% of their waste on average each year, and have kept almost 100,000 pounds of recyclables out of the landfill since 2012!

Event recycling can be confusing with so many different food vendors, but there are a few common items that should always be recycled and some that should not.


  • Plastic Bottles (Empty)
  • Aluminum or Tin Cans (Empty)
  • Cardboard (Flattened)
  • Paper (Event Brochures, Magazines, Flyers, etc)
  • Glass Bottles and Jars (Empty)
  • Paper Cups (Empty)


  • Napkins
  • Dirty Plates
  • Plastic Utensils/Dinnerware/Silverware/Cups
  • Any Styrofoam
  • Straws and Straw Wrappers
  • Food Waste
  • Foil Bags & Wrappers (Candy, Chips, etc)
  • Event Banners

If you notice an event is not recycling, you can help! Starting a conversation about event recycling in Sioux Falls is sometimes all it takes to make it happen.

  1. Send a message to the event organizer asking why they do not offer recycling
  2. Ask the Ecomaniacs if they can reach out to the event to partner with them
  3. Notify the City to let them know you’d like to see recycling there in the future.

Are you planning a Sioux Falls event?

Check out these FREE resources from the City of Sioux Falls:

City of Sioux Falls Event Recycling Poster

City of Sioux Falls Event Recycling Poster