Residents were invited to put their artistic abilities to the test Saturday by painting eco-friendly rain barrels during a workshop hosted by Elmhurst Park District at Eldridge Park.
For $88, participants received a 55-gallon rain barrel to take home, but first they learned about the sustainable benefits of conserving rain water collected from from their home's down spouts. Later, the group broke out paint brushes and customized their barrels.
The city of Elmhurst also offers rain barrels to residents for purchase through an agreement with The Conservation Foundation.The barrels cost $90 and are available by contacting Andrea Ribulotta at (630) 530-3779.
The barrels are about 48 inches high and 24 inches in diameter. They include two connection spigots and a screen cover. In order to use them, residents will need to cut an existing downspout and place the rain barrel underneath it. Complete instructions for installing the barrels can be found on the city’s Web site.
While collected rain water is not for drinking, cooking or bathing, it is ideal for watering plants. Be creative! Paint the barrels to make an attractive addition to a garden.
It adds up. One ½-inch of rain on a 1,000-square-foot roof yields about 300 gallons of water, according to www.RainBarrelSource.com.