Margate Business Association volunteers and staff, eco friendly reusable “Bag It Forward” bags at the Colmar Home Center warehouse. From left, Wally Korzeniewski, Lee Rothblatt, Anna Maria Courter, Michael Collins, Tom Collins.

MARGATE – Wednesday, June 29 was the first distribution day for the  “Bag It Forward” reusable bag program in Margate.  Local retailers and other Margate businesses received the bags as part of a new program from the Margate Business Association and its member businesses in cooperation with the City of Margate.

Reusable cloth shopping bags will be offered to Margate shoppers free of charge when they purchase at member businesses. The only provision is that patrons either reuse them themselves or give one to a friend…Bag It Forward.

Bags will also be distributed to riders in Le Tour de Downbeach, a 14-mile family fun bike ride through the Downbeach area on June 2, Thrilling Thursday Moonlight Movies in July and August and at Beachstock The Planet’s Biggest Beach Party on  June 29 while supplies last.

In an effort to step up the business community’s stewardship of Margate and the waters that surrounding it, participating merchants will be distributing up to 20,000 of these reusable, recyclable fabric shopping bags, which can potentially replace more than 100,000 single use plastic bags, which are detrimental to the area’s fragile marine environment.

Members of the Martin Bloom Pavilion, excited to receive a free ‘Bag It Forward’ bag.

Margate Mayor Michael was on hand for the distribution process.

“This outstanding program is another great step towards the elimination of plastic bag use,” Becker said.

“Bag It Forward provides a green alternative that does not cost either the shopper or the businesses any additional money, without the need for local legislation,” MBA President Ed Berger said.  “Wawa on Washington Avenue will be producing and distributing 5,000 of the Bag It Forward bags as well, rolling out in mid June, and we are thrilled they have joined us.”

Volunteers and MBA staff met at the Colmar Home Center and The UPS Store warehouse on Essex Avenue to sort, load trucks and cars, for distribution to local retailers and businesses.

“We are happy and proud to be a part of the MBA and this program to eliminate plastic bags from our city our beaches and our waters,” said MBA board member Michael Collins, owner of Colmar Home Center and The UPS Store.

Christina of Christina’s is ready to give out ‘Bag It Forward’ bags.

Primary sponsors include Dr. Joseph Berretone of Down Beach Dental, Tomatoe’s Restaurant, Done, Colmar Hardware and Wawa.  Also sponsoring are Sunny Sunoco, Two Cents Plain, Margate Dairy Bar and Burger, Hot Bagels, Kidrageous, Playgroups Plus, Hot Bagels and More, Dinos Subs and Pizza and Maynards Café and Starlite Garden.  Additional underwriters will be added as the program gains momentum so the MBA can continue distribution indefinitely as more members renew or join the effort.

For more information visit Also, download the Catch the Margate Wave app, the portal to all things Margate.

Lucy loves her picture on the ‘Bag It Forward’ bag, as visitors proudly display the Free eco-friendly bag.

Categories: Margate

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.