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Stella’s on 97 is a fine casual dining restaurant in Forest Lake.


Stella’s on 97 was recycling cardboard and fryer oil. They wanted to do more, but were concerned that expanding their recycling would add too much complication to their business. Then they heard about the BizRecycling program at a presentation sponsored by a BizRecycling Partner. Stella’s on 97 owner Max Stephens reached out to us for help.

How We Helped

Our Recycling Expert visited Stella’s on 97 to meet with Stephens and learn more about their restaurant. It was clear that adding a single-sort recycling program would allow Stella’s on 97 to divert a lot of waste. In addition, they suggested that Stella’s on 97 add an organics recycling program.

While reviewing the restaurant’s garbage bill, our Recycling Expert discovered that the charges seemed disproportionately high. A call to the hauler got that straightened out, and also allowed Stella’s on 97 to arrange to add single-sort recycling to their service.

Our Recycling Expert helped Stephens apply for a BizRecycling grant. The grant was used to purchase new recycling and organics bins for the restaurant, and helped pay to expand the existing waste enclosure to accommodate the new organics collection dumpster.


Adding single-sort and organics recycling to their waste management process helped cut Stella’s on 97’s trash volume in half. They are now diverting over 7,000 pounds of organics and nearly 5,000 pounds of recyclables per year. They’re also saving $500 a month on their trash bill!

Stephens tells us that, “I never would have started recycling if it wasn’t for this program. Making is simple with putting all recycling in one bin, plus help with training was huge.”

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