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Capitol Hill helps turn shoes into sports surfaces

WASHINGTON, DC (7 July, 2005) - Campaigning took on a whole new meaning during June as five House Members squared off, not over control of the House, but over collecting old sneakers.

Participating in Nike and the National Recycling Coalition's Capitol Hill Reuse-A-Shoe Challenge, the Oregon House delegation competed to collect as many worn-out athletic shoes as possible. These shoes will be recycled and turned into sports and play surfaces around the world.

"Reuse-A-Shoe connects our long-term commitments of developing innovative ways of eliminating waste and promoting the physical activity of young people," said Orson Porter, Deputy Director of Government Relations, Nike. "For the second year in a row, Capitol Hill has proven to be an excellent partner in our efforts to create new places for kids to play and be active. We thank the Oregon delegation for leading this effort."

Congressman Greg Walden was this year's winner, with his office collecting a record number of nearly 500 pairs of sneakers. Congressman Walden received a donation in his name that will go to a nonprofit organization of his choice to help get kids more physically active.

"Taking steps to ensure that our kids have a place to play and be physically active is so important, and the Reuse-A-Shoe program is one way to help do that. I want to thank everyone in Oregon's Second District and in Washington, D.C. that donated shoes through not only my office, but also through the entire delegation. They have helped make an investment in the health and well-being of future generations," said U.S. Representative Greg Walden (R-Hood River).

The drive brought out full the participation from all members of the Oregon House Delegation with Rep. Peter DeFazio, Rep. Earl Blumenauer, Rep. Darlene Hooley and Rep. David Wu breaking last year's record, collecting over 1,300 pairs of shoes this year. Congressional offices employed grassroots tactics, offering cookies, doughnuts and cheers of support in recognition of shoe donations.

The National Recycling Coalition and Nike Reuse-A-Shoe partnership is now in its third year, currently partnering with 37 local recycling organizations across the country. Celebrating its twelfth anniversary, the Nike Reuse-A-Shoe program recycles one-two million pairs of post-consumer and defective shoes each year and has helped donate more than 170 sports surfaces around the world to help kids get more physically active.

"The National Recycling Coalition has collected nearly a quarter of a million shoes - deriving enough Nike Grind material to create nearly 23 tracks. Our partnership with Nike gives NRC members the opportunity to expand what can be collected through community recycling programs," said Kate Krebs, executive director of the National Recycling Coalition. "I'm proud to report that Reuse-A-Shoe collection sites are now located within 15 miles of 37 percent of the U.S. population."

About National Recycling Coalition Founded in 1978, the National Recycling Coalition, Inc. (NRC) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization representing all the diverse interests committed to the common goal of maximizing recycling to achieve the benefits of resource conservation, solid waste reduction, environmental protection, energy conservation, and social and economic development. Its 4,000 members include recycling and environmental organizations; large and small businesses; federal, state and local governments; and individuals. The NRC is dedicated to the advancement and improvement of recycling, and also source reduction, composting and reuse, by providing technical information, education, training, outreach and advocacy services to its members in order to conserve resources and benefit the environment. For additional information about the NRC, please visit

About Nike Reuse-A-Shoe and NikeGO Reuse-A-Shoe is an integral part of NikeGO, Nike's long-term commitment to promote healthier lifestyles for kids through physical activity. Since the Reuse-A-Shoe program began in 1993, Nike has helped donate more than 170 sport surfaces, called NikeGO Places, to communities around the world. The surfaces use Nike Grind material as a component of the total surface composition, representing an approximate number of recycled shoes in each surface. Kids win because many of these sports surfaces are donated in communities where they wouldn't otherwise have access to high-performance sports surfaces. It's also a win for the environment, as thousands of pairs of athletic shoe material are diverted from landfills. For more information about Nike Reuse-A-Shoe and NikeGO, visit and

Individuals wanting to take part in a collection set up by one of the organizations participating in the Nike Reuse-A-Shoe program can find a list of addresses on the Nike Reuse-A-Shoe Web site -

NIKE, Inc. based in Beaverton, Oregon is the world's leading designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide variety of sports and fitness activities.