Show, Inc. helps the disabled while protecting the environment

Since its inception as the Sapulpa Handicapped Opportunity Workshop over four decades ago, Show Inc. has become a valuable asset to Sapulpa and the surrounding area.

The non-profit has undergone a gradual metamorphosis that has transformed it into a trifecta of community services housed in a 16,000-square-foot facility. Part of that change involves removing the word “Handicapped” from the name and legally changing the name to Show Inc. The other components of the change include addressing the needs of the developmentally disabled through an assisted living program, an adult day care for the developmentally disabled who are unable to work, as well as for people who are older and have retired or work part-time, but who don’t want to sit at home. Providing training and viable employment for those physically able is another aspect of the change. Last, but not least, is the recycling program, which benefits citizens and the environment.

Robert Lawrence stands near a trailer full of cardboard as Show workers disassemble boxes in the background. “The biggest thing we’re doing right now is expanding our current program,” he says.

According to executive Director Robert Lawrence, Show’s mission statement is: “To initiate and operate programs for people with developmental disabilities in the Sapulpa and Tulsa area.”

Lawrence said the mission to people with disabilities has evolved as the needs in the community have changed.

The foray into recycling was initiated by a previous director who collaborated with Micheal Patton, who at the time, was the Executive Director of the Metropolitan Environmental Trust in Tulsa, Oklahoma to develop a recycling program.

When asked how many developmentally disabled were in the program, Lawrence said: “we currently serve 85, that is down a little bit, we are coming back up from the number after COVID, but we are about back to where we were.”

Lawrence discussed the economic lifeline that recycling provided during the pandemic, “I don’t know what we would have done without those funds because our clients were not going to come. We were never told to shut down, we shut down before the Governor did that because we did not have any clients. The families said ‘I am not sending my child because it is not safe,’ it really wasn’t. We were still collecting material to the extent that we could.”

Besides performing recycling jobs and shredding jobs, clients are employed to do janitorial work. Currently, Good Shepherd Episcopal Church, First Church, and King’s Cross Church utilize Show to clean their facilities. 

Show accepts the following products: Paper such as office paper, junk mail, newspapers magazines, brown paper bags, and phone books;  No. 1 & No. 2 plastic bottles, such as pop bottles, water bottles, milk jugs, and liquid laundry products containers, glass bottles and jars, aluminum cans, and tin cans such as vegetable cans.

Note: lids should be removed from plastic bottles because they can become stuck in baling machines, and they can be hurled from the bottle when the air inside the bottle is compressed.

Glass jars, bottles, and metal cans should be rinsed and the lids from glass bottles and jars removed before recycling.

Items not accepted include plastic bowls, flower pots, children’s toys, plastic silverware, plastic buckets, plastic bags, medicine bottles, paper towels, Kleenex, tissue paper, paper plates, cups, bowls, napkins, plastic bowls, flower pots, children’s toys, plastic silverware, plastic buckets, plastic bags, medicine bottles, toilet paper and paper towel cores, aluminum foil, aluminum siding, pet food cans, plate glass and mirrors, vases, light bulbs, decorative glass, pots, pans, scrap metal, paint cans, aerosol cans, Styrofoam, and fast-food containers.

Acceptable E-Waste items would include computers, servers, monitors, keyboards, mice, printers, fax machines, hard drives, tape and zip drives, gaming consoles, cell phones, telephones, digital cameras, stereo components, radios, toasters, microwaves, old power tools, vacuum cleaners, cables, power cords, power supplies, networking equipment, modems, routers, printed circuit boards, small Uninterruptible Power Supplies, and dry-cell batteries (carbon-zinc, alkaline, and Ni-Cad, and lithium-ion). As Lawrence said, “just about anything with a cord.”

Televisions and monitors are accepted, however, there is a $30 fee for TVs and a $10 fee for monitors. These fees represent the cost to Show to recycle these items through the company Natural Evolution are subject to change and are limited in weight to 40 pounds.

Unacceptable E-Waste items are Light bulbs, large appliances, air conditioners, refrigerators, smoke alarms, thermostats, and products that use Freon or fuel.

Curbside recycling pickup is offered for $10 a month or, with a subscription, $8 a month.

Shredding Services- Show provides drop-off shredding of documents for 15 cents a pound, assured confidentiality, and a certificate of destruction. Businesses or organizations with ongoing shredding needs can obtain recycling carts with free pickup for only $42.00 per cart.

According to the Executive Director, Show processed one million pounds of material last year.

Director Lawrence discussed the future of the recycling program: “The biggest thing we are doing right now is expanding our current programs. We have about a hundred commercial customers in Tulsa, and we want to grow that part of our business…we have a box truck, and hopefully we are going to buy a second box truck, and part of the reason for that is to expand that end of our program. That is a big market in terms of volume of material.” 

Recycling reduces the amount of waste going into landfills and saves precious natural resources that are quickly being consumed. Since fewer materials have to be consumed or processed, pollution is reduced, and climate change is being remediated through the reduction of greenhouse gases.

Show Inc. is funded in part through grants from organizations like the United Way, Bartlett Foundation, Zarrow Foundation, and The Chapman Foundation. Medicare pays for certain client services, and Show also accepts private donations.

Anyone wishing to donate to this worthy non-profit should go to their website:

 Donations by cash or check may be taken to 425 West Wells Blvd.