Bethany Sweeney wants to bring some holiday cheer to the Hamilton Town Dump this month with a few trash-tastic Christmas decorations assembled from items dropped off by residents.

Sweeney, who has served as dump supervisor for the last three years, said the decorations were her latest attempt to make the dump a little more fun.

This winter, she took things to the next level using items from what what she calls the “freemart,” which is comprised of items that town residents don’t want but are still in good condition.

“Anything that is still good or still works goes on the wall,” she said.

Sweeney is particularly proud of her recycled Christmas tree. Instead of Christmas ornaments and bulbs, she covered the tree with water bottles and empty soda and soup cans.

The idea started as an attempt to make the dump a nicer place for town residents to do business.

“People would complain that it was messy,” she said. “We wanted to clean things up.”

Next, Sweeney started decorating for the holidays and handing out suckers for children and dog treats for the dogs that came to visit the dump.

She wanted parents to feel comfortable bringing their children.

“A couple of years ago Halloween fell on a day that we were open,” she said. “I decided to hand out candy and dressed up as a chicken.”

Sweeney has a special surprise planned for this holiday too. Anyone making a trip out to the dump the Saturday before Christmas will find Sweeney and her assistant Charles Parker dressed up in holiday garb ready to wish any visitor a happy holiday.

The Hamilton dump is open to town residents on Tuesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.


Winona Daily News Crime & Government Reporter

Tobias Mann covers crime and local government for the Winona Daily News. He can be reached at or at 507-271-3271.

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