An hour BEFORE Milk Source’s annual Compost Day was officially supposed to start, 100 trailers had already been loaded with fertilizer at Tidy View Dairy.

An hour AFTER the event officially began, the pace only picked up: Another 175 neighbors pulled in and waited for their turn to get a free load of quality compost.

The hour after that saw similar numbers.

The same phenomenon was taking place at Rosendale and New Chester dairies in Wisconsin as well as Hudson Dairy in Michigan.

Maybe it was pent-up post-pandemic demand or the surprisingly moderate weather, but either way, 2021 shattered all previous Compost Day numbers. At least 1,000 vehicle loads were carried off in a 4-hour blitz of activity.

“This would not have been successful without great coordination between our Operations and Community Liaison teams,” said Avi Stern, director of public affairs. “We thought this year might be big, but no one honestly could have foreseen this. A lot of people had to work together to pull this off and I want to thank all of them.”

Compost Day traditionally takes place on the Saturday before Mother’s Day in order to get gardens planted during an optimal time of year.

Among this year’s crews of workers were the Adams-Friendship Powerlifting Team (a skill that came in handy) at New Chester as well as Boy Scout Troop 623 at Tidy View.

“The scouts always say ‘Many hands make a light load,’” Stern said, “And this year I’m glad we had maaany hands.”