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Katie McQuaid's Scene in Manchester: Toss out computer, not your info

April 06. 2014 9:16PM

Do you have an electronics graveyard in your basement? You know, a place where old computers, monitors, televisions and all their accessories go to die. Maybe they work, maybe they don't. It doesn't matter.

Katie Orlando, executive director with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Manchester, knows many people have unwanted electronics, because they often call Big Brothers Big Sisters to donate them. But the organization has not had the capacity to accept the donations, until now.

This Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at NBT Bank on Canal Street, Big Brothers Big Sisters is co-hosting what it hopes will be the first of regular "E-cycle" events. The organization is working with the bank, IT Secure Services and Willy's Computer Recycling Co. to provide electronic recycling for residents of Manchester and surrounding communities.

All electronics — meaning anything with a plug — will be accepted. Most will be taken for free, though not your old-school cathode ray tube televisions and computer monitors, which contain hazardous waste. The CRT televisions will be accepted for $20 each, the CRT monitors for $10 each.

But can't you just bring that stuff to the dump? Sure, but when you dump your old computer in the dump, you may also be dumping personal information stored inside. I barely know how to delete my Internet browsing history (not that I have anything to hide), so I certainly don't know how to wipe my hard drive of all personal information. I don't even really know what or where a hard drive is.

Orlando said staff from IT Secure Services will be on hand to help make sure your information is wiped clean before it goes off to Willy to be recycled. And if the product is good enough to be refurbished, IT Secure will fix it up and donate it to Big Brothers Big Sisters for use by the organization or the children it serves. Big Brothers Big Sisters will also happily accept any cash donations that visitors want to make during their electronics drop-off.

Your volunteer opportunity is knocking

Volunteer opportunities don't just drop out of the sky. Well after you start volunteering, it may seem that way. But where do you start? What group should you support with your time? And what kind of commitment does it involve?

Manchester Young Professionals Network is inviting potential volunteers to attend its 5th Annual Non Profit Fair on Tuesday, April 15, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the SEE Science Center in the Millyard.

There will be 24 non-profit organizations providing board, committee and volunteer opportunities to attendees. The event is free to attend and there will be free food, a cash bar, and of course, lots of networking. Attendees will also receive free admission to the SEE Science Center for the night.

For more information, or to register, visit

The most flavorful night of the year

Foodies will unite at the Radisson on Wednesday, April 16, when nearly 60 restaurateurs from across the state share samples of their work for the annual Taste of the Nation.

From 6 to 9 p.m., more than 800 guests are expected to enjoy small bites from each restaurant, as well as beer, wine, spirits and a silent auction.

Entertainment will be provided by the Lakes Region Big Band and, if you still think it's a good idea to get your picture taken after all that eating and drinking, SweetShot Photography will provide a photo booth.

You can see a list of participating restaurants and buy tickets — $65 for general admission or $100 for a special VIP opportunity — at For a limited time, use the promo code TASTEMANCHESTER14 and save $15 on each ticket.

Proceeds go to local charities that combat childhood hunger.

NH365.ORG Event of the Week

Finally, books from the library you don't have to return. The Manchester City Library is holding its $10 A Bag Book Sale Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Just bring your own average-size grocery bag (cloth or paper) to fill up from a selection of more than 9,000 used books, VHS tapes, DVDs, musical odds and ends, and more. Books are available for all ages and interests, including large-print books. Each bag full is — you guessed it — $10.

For more information on this and other Manchester area things to do, visit

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