Hilliard's Recreation and Parks Department is bringing back a "make your own rain barrel workshop" because of a flood of demand.

Hilliard's Recreation and Parks Department is bringing back a "make your own rain barrel workshop" because of a flood of demand.

A rain barrel is a container used to collect and store rainwater. The idea is that excess rainwater would ordinarily be diverted to storm drains, sewer systems and local waterways, but by collecting it in a rain barrel, the resident can use the rainwater to do things like water lawns, gardens or wash a car.

The workshop takes place at 6:30-8 p.m. Aug. 26 in the Hilliard Community Center, 3800 Veterans Memorial Drive. Officials said today is the deadline to register by going to www.cityofhilliard. com, click on the Recreation and Parks Department page, on the right side they can click on the workshop, fill in the bottom, mail the form into the Recreation and Parks Department, but they make out the check to the Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District.

The cost is $45 per barrel the barrels are blue and have a 55-gallon capacity. For more information, call 614-486-9613 ext. 125.

Hilliard previously had a rain barrel workshop July 8.

"It was a popular course," said recreation supervisor Beth Simon. "We're offering it a second time because the first one was so popular. I've even had a gentleman call me after the class from the first time, and said he painted his rain barrel to match his house. It's working great, looks great and he's very happy with it."

Simon said a woman recently called her saying her mother had taken a similar course in northeast Ohio, and asked if Hilliard offered one. Simon contacted the Soil and Water Conservation District, and found out that habitat conservationist Stephanie A. Suter teaches a rain barrel workshop.

"There are a lot of different types out there, but usually they're about the 55-gallon drum size," Suter said of the rain barrels.

"There are a lot of people over the last few years who have been installing them all over the county," Suter said. "We get a lot of calls from people interested in them. Where can they buy them, where should they go to if they want to make one themselves, how do they do it, so we're basically a resource for those individuals."

Suter said that in addition to being to reuse rainwater, mass use of rain barrels could help to increase the water quality of streams.

"With all the impervious surfaces we have, we're creating a lot of extra water going into those waterways, which can cause flooding and property damage. This is something simple homeowners can do to help prevent some of those detrimental impacts."