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September 16th Racine Public Library – Repair Café.

What do you do with a broken toaster? Or with a bike when the wheel runs out of true? Or with a sweater full of moth holes? Toss it? No way! The Friends of the Racine Public Library Inc. has organized Repair Café sessions at the Racine Public Library, 75 7th Street on the third Saturday of each month; the next one is September 16.

Starting at 11 am and ending at 1:30 pm, various volunteer repair experts will be available to help make all possible repairs free of charge. Tools and materials will also be on hand. People visiting the Repair Café will bring along their broken items from home. Toasters, lamps, hair dryers, clothes, bikes, toys, crockery… anything that is broken is welcome. And can more than likely be repaired. The Repair Café specialists almost always have the know-how.

By promoting repairs, the Friends of the Racine Public Library wants to help reduce mountains of waste. This is absolutely necessary, according to Hazel Dickfoss “We throw away piles of stuff in the United States, even things which have practically nothing wrong with them and which could easily be used again after a simple repair. Unfortunately, many people have forgotten that they can have things repaired. Repair Café wants to change all that.”

Repair Café is also meant to put neighbors in touch with each other in a new way. And to discover that a lot of know-how and practical skills can be found close to home. “If you repair a bike, a CD player or a pair of trousers with a previously unfamiliar neighbor, you look at that person in a different light the next time you run into them on the street. Jointly making repairs can lead to pleasant contacts in the neighborhood.”

Hazel Dickfoss points out repairs can save money and resources, and can help minimize CO2 emissions. “But above all, Repair Café just wants to show how much fun repairing things can be, and how easy it often is.” No registration is necessary. One item will be repaired per person. You may bring a second item, but must return to the end of the line, so all who attend may have an item looked at. There is no cost, but voluntary donations are requested.

The Friends thank Robert W.Baird & Co., Lees Hardware, and Sew N’Save for joining us in sponsoring this program.

Repair Café Foundation

The Repair Café concept arose in the Netherlands, in 2009, and was formulated by Martine Postma, at the time, an Amsterdam-bases journalist/publicist. In 2010, she started the Repair Café Foundation (see Repaircafe.org). This foundation provides support to local groups around the world wishing to start their own Repair Café. The foundation also supports the Repair Café in Racine.