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Zero Waste Game Day

A waste warrior pushes a recycle bin through game day crowd.

What is Zero Waste Game Day?

The Zero Waste Game Day program integrates fan experience, academic research, student leadership, and community engagement to actively work towards zero waste at UT athletic events. Please help keep our campus and Neyland Stadium clean! By volunteering with us you are participating in a monumental movement towards Zero Waste Events.

We partner with Athletics, Aramark, and Eastman’s “Good Sports Always Give Back” program for Zero Waste Game Days. Our goal is to keep at least 90% of waste produced at home sporting events out of the landfill through recycling, composting, and food donation.

Waste at Football Games

In 2019, home football games produced more than 23 tons of landfill waste per game on average. That means as Vols, we sent 162 tons of waste to already overflowing landfills over the course of the season.

Vol fans know that Neyland Stadium is a sacred space. But sometimes it gets treated like a trash can. What’s more, most of the items that get tossed could be recycled or composted. The Tennessee Volunteers want to do better, and it’s possible! During our best ever season in 2015, we diverted 66% of waste from the landfill. By helping to participate in Zero Waste Game Days we can all contribute to a cleaner and more sustainable campus. You can find the Waste Warriors at every home football game collecting recycling at tailgates, monitoring bins outside the stadium, and helping fans recycle. Below we go into more specifics about what you will be doing by volunteering with us.

Volunteer with us!

Sign up to volunteer with us here.


Volunteer Responsibilities During the Game:

  • The first shift of volunteers before the game works in pairs and hands out recycling bags to fans in tailgate areas, picks up litter, and collects bags full of recycling from tailgate areas
  • The second shift of volunteers during the game works in pairs to collect recyclables and litter around the outside of the stadium, gathers bins to empty into the recycling truck, and collects and washes recycling bins at the recycling warehouse
  • Click here for more information on Game Days.


Gameday recycling binRocky Top Recycling

Fans entering tailgating areas can pick up an orange bag for recycling and a clear plastic bag for landfill waste at the waste stations. Recycling around Rocky Top helps divert waste from landfills and keeps Vol dollars right here in Big Orange Country.

Game day fans should fill up their recycling bags and put them in designated recycling dumpsters. If dumpsters aren’t available, fans should tie up their bags and leave them in their tailgate area for Sustainability staff and volunteers to collect during the game.

Orange Bag: Recyclables
  • Aluminum cans
  • Plastic cups and bottles
  • Steel cans
  • Clean paper
  • Beverage and pizza boxes
  • Cardboard boxes (always flatten boxes please!)

Clear Bag: Landfill Waste
  • Glass Bottles
  • Food waste
  • Paper plates and cups
  • Foils and wraps
  • Styrofoam



Trash and Recycling Stations are located in 4 parking areas on campus.

  • Lot 9
  • G10T
  • G5/30
  • SDHM Permits

Please clean up your area before going to the game and dispose of all materials in appropriate bags.