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Repair Cafe This Weekend at Reinstein Woods

If replacing a broken household item is on your to-do list for this weekend, there’s an opportunity to learn how to fix it up, meet some new people, and save yourself some money in the process.

The Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center will host a free Dare to Repair Cafe this Saturday, January 27 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. For those unfamiliar with the concept, a repair cafe assembles a group  of volunteer “fixers” to help visitors learn how to fix a broken household item. The event is free to attend, you learn some valuable skills in the process, and – best of all – you’re doing your part to keep unnecessary waste out of our local landfill.

“As we enter a new year, we often think of the expression ‘Out with the old, in with the new.’ The Dare to Repair Café challenges us to fix the ‘old’ instead of buying new, which helps the environment by diverting waste from landfills,” said Meaghan Boice-Green, Reinstein Woods Center Director.

This weekend’s event will be the fourth installation in a series that launched in the University District last fall. Partners from City of Buffalo Recycling Program, Knowledgefire, University Heights CoLab, and University Heights Tool Library teamed up to organize an event that brought Buffalo residents together to share their skills and build community around a common goal – learning to preserve rather than replace. Since the first event, the partnership has expanded to include The Foundry, Friends of Reinstein Woods, and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

The range of repairs sought at these events is pretty wide – from broken lamps and vacuums, to tools and electronic devices, and even larger items like snowblowers and bicycles. You can learn how to patch up an article of clothing or sharpen a dull set of knives. Saturday’s event will feature a demonstration on toilet repairs and there will be  volunteers on hand to discuss basic car repairs and masonry work.

Since hosting their first repair cafe event in October 2017, the organizers have hosted three successful events with 80 participants, repairing 49 items and diverting 593 pounds of waste from the landfill. The group will continue to host events in the future, so keep an eye on The University Heights Tool Library website for an updated list of dates and locations for upcoming repair cafe events.

This weekend’s event takes place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve Environmental Education Center, located at 93 Honorine Drive in Depew. For more information, contact Reinstein Woods at 716.683.5959 or visit the event website


Written by Sarah Maurer

Sarah Maurer

I moved to Buffalo to attend Canisius College in 2007 and began writing for Buffalo Rising as a journalism intern in 2010. Working with Newell and meeting numerous entrepreneurs, activists and everyday folks who were working to make their city better made a huge impact on my decision to stay here. After witnessing all the positive development and grassroots initiatives happening in neighborhoods throughout the city, I was inspired to pursue a term of service in AmeriCorps and a career in Buffalo's non-profit sector. I currently work in the housing department at the Lt. Col. Matt Urban Human Services Center of WNY and am excited to be a part of their ongoing efforts to revitalize the Broadway Fillmore neighborhood. I also volunteer as the project coordinator for Artfarms Buffalo. I continue to write for Buffalo Rising because I love having the opportunity to stay connected to those working toward positive changes for the Queen City.

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