Bree Cotroneo | Contributor |

Where tennis balls go after they die

125 million tennis balls land in US landfills each year, according to RecycleBalls Founder Derrick Senior. But why is this? In the past, recycling of tennis balls didn’t exist and balls would be trashed after use, just to end up in a landfill. But more recently, tennis clubs in Vermont have been looking into solutions that result in reusing and recycling tennis balls.

Middlebury Indoor Tennis: Reusing tennis balls

Brian McDonough is the general manager of Middlebury Indoor Tennis (MIT), in Middlebury, Vermont and he oversees where the club’s used tennis balls go. McDonough explains, “All our tennis balls are reused. We have a great demand from the humane society around the corner. We are on the path that volunteer dog walkers go on with the dogs. We leave a basket of used tennis balls once they’re completely spent out there on the curb, and they disappear with the dogs.” McDonough continues to explain that the club occasionally receives requests for used tennis balls from schools, people doing projects, and people doing physical therapy.

The Eastwood Edge: Recycling tennis balls

Joyce Doud is a tennis pro at the Eastwood Edge, in South Burlington, Vermont and she manages the used ball process at the club. Doud explains that the Eastwood Edge is part of RecycleBalls. More specifically, this means that RecycleBalls provides the club with large boxes to collect used tennis balls in. Once the boxes are full, the organization comes to empty them and takes the used balls. Doud says that RecycleBalls gives the club $0.05 per ball that they collect. She also mentions that the club has received award certificates for how many balls that they have given back to the Recycleballs program.