The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Eau Claire Refillery celebrates with one-year birthday bash

Local zero-waste refillery celebrates one-year of eco-friendly products and decreasing single-use plastic
The+Eau+Claire+Refillery+Store+on+N+Barstow+Street
Photo by Taylor Boggess
The Eau Claire Refillery Store on N Barstow Street

The Eau Claire Refillery celebrated one year of operation with a birthday bash and special sales from Oct. 13 through 15.

Greta Gladitsch, the store owner, has been running the store since last year in downtown Eau Claire. Gladitsch opened the Refillery in an attempt to help decrease single-use plastic consumption in Eau Claire.

The store’s main purpose is to not only eliminate single-use plastic and allow people to refill, but also remove waste that they have at home.

Gladitch offers many different items to restock, varying from soaps to dog shampoo. The wide variety offers something for everyone who enters her store.

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At the event, there were a wide array of customers, some who had been shopping with Gladitsch since the store opened, and others who were shopping there for the first time.

Dietrich, a first-time shopper, heard of the Refillery from his wife who had researched stores like Gladitsch’s. Originally from California, he said that there were more stores like this one on the West Coast.

“We have done this in California before, where it’s a bit more prevalent there, and it’s nice to see it here,” Dietrich said.

On the other hand, veteran shopper Rebecca Whitebody has been shopping at the Refillery since it opened last year and makes her way from Augusta just to shop there.

“I support this business and others like it, that is it is eco-friendly, because that’s what our world needs more of,” Whitebody said.

Gladitcsh said she has plans to possibly open a second store to share the zero-waste practices with more of Eau Claire, though she is unsure of where the best place would be to go next.

“Eau Claire and its surrounding area has really adapted well to the concept of being zero-waste or eliminating the waste at home, and I think we are doing really well bringing something totally new to the Eau Claire area,” Gladitcsh said. 

Gladitsch said she is really proud of how the community supports small businesses. Many customers come in to simply donate jars and to use the store’s recycling program.

Guests are able to bring in items such as plastic razors, juice pouches, toothpaste tubes and flexible snack pouches, which Gladitsch will further dispose of for no charge.

She has a shelf full of primarily donated containers that customers are able to use to fill free of charge.

A look at what the recycling program accepts (Photo by Taylor Boggess)

Gladitsch said she is grateful for the support of those who do anything for her store. Whether donating or refilling with her, she is happy to assist those with their low-to-zero-waste journeys. 

“I always tell people ‘don’t be afraid to start a zero-waste journey. Or a low-waste living journey, it can be overwhelming, but we are here to help and you can start with something small or you can do as much as you want at the time,’” Gladitsch said.

The Refillery’s Facebook can be found here, and their website here.

Boggess can be reached at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Taylor Boggess, Copy Editor
Taylor Boggess is a first-year creative writing student, and this is her second semester at The Spectator. When she's not reading romance novels, she can be found lying in her bed watching Pedro Pascal TikTok edits.

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