West Michigan school wins playground made out of toothbrushes

Posted at 5:54 PM, Oct 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-12 18:00:55-04

CUTLERVILLE, Mich. -- The students at Legacy Christian Elementary School are taking brushing and flossing to a new level.

Over the past two years, they've been recycling old toothbrushes, floss containers, and toothpaste tubes in hopes of winning a new playground structure.

Today their hopes were realized as they were rewarded with a new playground structure, for winning the Recycle Playground Challenge.

It's a contest sponsored by Meijer and Colgate, and organized by Terra Cycle. "So it's very sturdy and it gives the kids something to be proud of," says Mamme Mensah, senior account manager with Terra Cycle. "Because they're able to see their achievement right up front and center."

The kids at Legacy Christian Elementary recycled more than 15,000 oral care items to help win the grand prize: A $50,000 playground structure that should last for at least 30 years.

They also earned more than 86,000 online votes to help win the prize.

"It was a lot of work, and you kind of don't know what you're getting into when you first start," says Vickie Zylstra, the head of the Terra Cycle Committee and a parent at Legacy Christian. "But it was definitely rewarding. And you know, what a great thing we were able to bring to the school."

Legacy Christian Elementary competed against 130 other schools from across Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Kentucky, and Wisconsin to win the Recycle Playground Challenge.