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KIRKWOOD - Just in time for the holidays, Louie went shopping at Walmart.
But rather than buying gifts for friends and family, he was competing in a race throughout the store to collect more items than other area sports mascots.
The event, dubbed a "Race for Recycling," was part of America Recycles Day, a nationally recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States. For 15 minutes, the mascots raced through the Kirkwood store to collect as many recycled items and "green" products as they could. The top three winning mascots received Walmart gift cards for a charity of their choice in the amounts of $500, $250 and $100 respectively.
Although Louie didn't finish in the top three, he did win a 20-inch computer monitor that was donated to the Blues 14 Fund.
Recycling is a multi-billion dollar industry that employs millions of Americans and is good for the environment. If each household in St. Louis County alone were to recycle just one extra aluminum can, it would prevent 77 tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere. Nationally, the value lost by discarding packaging rather than recycling is estimated to be $11.4 billion.
Thursday's event was sponsored by St. Louis Green Inc. and Walmart, who both partnered with the Saint Louis County Department of Heath for the "Race for Recycling."
The event was also attended by Kirkwood Mayor Mike Brown, St. Louis Green Inc. Executive Director Craig Jung and Walmart Market Manager Robin Toretta.
Other participating sports mascots included Rampage from the St. Louis Rams and Louie the Saint Bernard from Maryville University.
Information from a stlouisgreen.com press release was used for this report.