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Keep Akron Beautiful (KAB) is a nonprofit organization, that was established in 1981 to implement a comprehensive litter prevention, recycling promotion and beautification program for the City of Akron. Keep Akron Beautiful is a nonprofit 501©(3) organization mandated to serve the citizens of Akron, Ohio, KAB is funded by the private sector, and the City of Akron. KAB develops and implements public education and community improvement programs on litter prevention, recycling, graffiti eradication, waste management and beautification to encourage citizens to take pride in Akron by participating in these activities. The Board of Directors envisions a litter-free Akron, where all citizens and businesses take pride and responsibility for the cleanliness and beautification of their environment.

Green the Scene– Sneak Peak!

Keep Akron Beautiful will be hosting “Green the Scene” – a fundraiser celebration – on Wednesday, August 30th from 5-8:30 p.m. in The Bud and Susie Rogers Garden, located at the Akron Art Museum. This party will raise funds for Keep Akron Beautiful’s beautification programs. Guests will have the opportunity to learn about our various programs that the funds will benefit – including Litter Reduction & Beautification Programs, Litter and Illegal Dump Cleanups, Flowerscapes, and Graffiti Wipeout.

Each ticket includes an open beer and wine bar, as well as catering provided by the Swenson’s Food Truck.

A silent and live auction will take place during the evening, giving guests the chance to win unique prizes like a weekend stay at a Chautauqua Lake Home, a signed Cleveland Cavaliers Jersey, vouchers for Akron’s best golf courses, and a personalized landscape plan from Keep Akron Beautiful’s own Flowerscape director, Leah Heiser.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tickets for the event are $45 and can be purchased here or by phone at 330-375-2116. Guests are also invited to purchase a table at the event for $350. Only a limited amount of tables will be reserved. Sponsorship opportunities are still available with levels ranging from $500 to $25,000. Sponsors will receive event tickets and exclusive company perks.

Come join us in celebrating all that KAB does, the wonderful people that support us, and help us spread beautification throughout Akron!

Questions? Contact Helen Dauka at 330-375-2116 or hdauka@akronohio.gov.

Keep Akron Beautiful would like to thank those sponsors who have already committed to supporting Green the Scene through sponsorship: The FirstEnergy Foundation, D-A Specialty Co., Inc., Kim Haws Falasco of Robert W. Baird, Vista Storage of Green, Dominion Energy, Dan & Anna Zampelli, The H.E. Graves Jr. Family Foundation, Mustard Seed Market and Café, S.A. Comunale, Yanke Bionics, Inc., River Valley Paper Company, Bella Dora Management, Roetzel, Hasenstab Architects, Sikich Financial, Ohio Savings Bank, A Division of New York Community Bank, House of LaRose, LRC Realty, The City of Akron, Precious Petals Florist and Pepsi Beverages Company.

Dreamscape Makeover Gives Macedonia Winner a Hidden Garden

By Johanna Barnowski, Intern

Our 14th Dreamscape Makeover is complete! The Dreamscape Makeover funds KAB’s Flowerscape program, which has allowed us to plant over 1 million flowers since 1982. This year, we were able to raise $19,275!

This year’s winner, Hollie Lerchbacher of Macedonia, was selected to receive a $10,000 front or backyard makeover, designed by the 2017 lead landscape designer and project manager, Leah Heiser, Flowerscape Director at Keep Akron Beautiful.

landscaping plan for home makeover

Leah Heiser’s Landscape Plan for Makeover

Leah created a plan to transform Lerchbacher’s backyard into a hidden garden. Prior to the makeover kickoff, W. L. Tucker Supply Company, Inc. delivered great quality patio materials to the home. The homeowner opted to pay extra to have the patio installed. The patio was installed and the sod was removed for new beds by RG Thomas Landscape and Design, Inc. The trees were pruned by Advanced Arboriculture – they also were able to take down a big blue spruce last minute! The electric lines were laid by Tim’s Custom Electric for the lighting installed later during the makeover.

On day one, Wilson Plumbing & Heating, Inc. went out to stub out for back flow. TerraScape, Inc. delivered quality compost from KB BioEnergy, Inc. and blew the compost into beds. The existing beds were all cleaned up by Blooming Designs – they did a great job weeding and worked very hard! The beds were then tilled by the KAB Crew. The day was finished with the beds being edged by Lewis Landscaping, who edged fast, deep, and clean lines.

beginning over home makeover with empty beds tilled

Day two was filled with deliveries. Plants and trees were delivered from Suncrest Gardens, Dayton Nurseries, Pam’s Perennial Plant Farm, LLC, and Donzell’s Flower and Garden Center. A bench was also delivered from Donzell’s Flower and Garden Center! Additionally on day two, irrigation was installed into the new beds by Naragon Companies. They had a special attention to detail and knew exactly what equipment would be the most appropriate.

beginning over home makeover with empty beds tilled and some plants out

Flowerscape Crew Member Sue Johns Working on the Makeover and carrying buckets

Flowerscape Forewoman Sue Johns Working on the Makeover

Day three was planting day! All trees and all perennials were planted by Graf’s Landscaping and Nick’s Landscaping. They planted very diligently, mindfully, and did a great job pairing the quality products. Graf Growers Garden Center also delivered patio pots, a hook, and a bird house.

crwes planting flowers and trees at home makeover

On day four, all of the planting was finalized by the KAB Crew, and lights from Cascade Lighting, Inc were installed by Tim’s Custom Electric. The homeowner loves the lights and will be a returning customer!

patio with beds of trees and flowers being planted by crewsnaragon and wilson plumbing working outside on home makeover installing

On the last day of the makeover, mulch from KB BioEnergy, Inc. was picked up and installed by TerraScape, Inc. They were careful to keep the mulch clean and neat! The KAB Crew placed the trellis and patio pots and cleaned everything up. The makeover was completed!

Our crew was well taken care of with drinks from Circle K and cookies from Main Street Gourmet!

A huge thank you to all of our vendors! All of the products were great quality and much appreciated. All of the workers worked hard to make this dream come true for the homeowner. We truly could not have done this without them!

KAB Helps Neighborhood Network in Middlebury

By Johanna Barnowski, Intern

Middlebury, the first settlement in what is now Akron, is a neighborhood that surrounds much of downtown Akron, yet it is often ignored. Organizations such as Neighborhood Network have made it their mission to change this in order to build community and give hope to Middlebury residents.

Neighborhood Network is one of the main organizations that have made Middlebury a priority. They are a backbone group that brings together organizations, businesses, and residents to establish events that make a difference in this community. Neighborhood Network’s mission is to, “Build a unified voice to renew our community,” according to Marissa Little, Neighborhood Revitalization Coordinator. Little has been a forerunner in advocating for Middlebury and facilitating ways to make change in Akron.

Keep Akron Beautiful has been able to take part in the revitalization and beautification of this community through the use of our Community Pride Trailer and our Litter and Illegal Dump Trailer. The trailers are stocked with landscaping, litter removal, and other supplies that have been vital to the success of these projects.

Volunteers working on yard with Keep Akron Beautiful trailer

Volunteers working on Excelsior with KAB trailer

Our trailers aren’t our only valuable resource though! Little said, “We couldn’t do our work without the supplies from the trailers, but that’s not the only way Keep Akron Beautiful helps us. They provide the valuable resource of knowledge. They have expertise and are a huge help when it comes to planning a cleanup and problem solving.”

Keep Akron Beautiful has also assisted with other Middlebury beautification events. Most recently, our Community Pride Trailer was able to provide over 200 volunteers with cleanup and landscaping supplies at United Way Day of Action’s project “Middlebury Blitz” – in coordination with The Well Community Development Center.

This year, they have used KAB trailers to cleanup .23 tons of litter and debris in April with Hitchcock Flemming & Associates on Roselawn/Excelsior, 5.68 tons in May around Bettie St., .38 tons in June with Hoban High School at Corley & Beaver St., and 150 lbs. in June with Buchtel CLC on Excelsior. Collectively, these volunteers put in 476 man hours on these projects!

volunteers sitting with trash they cleaned up

Volunteers with cleanup from Corley St.

Neighborhood Network has recently merged with Habitat for Humanity of Summit County in order to bring in new groups of volunteers, increase revitalization services, and spread awareness of their mission. Little said that the merger with Habitat for Humanity of Summit County has, “increased the capacity of how many people we can serve. They bring expertise and abilities that we don’t have on our own.”

Neighborhood Network realizes the importance of a community having pride and hope. They work to reinvest value and dignity into Middlebury in hopes that the individual lives and community health of this neighborhood will grow and flourish.

Little says, “Building community helps the residents know that they are not alone in this. They aren’t isolated in this fight. It is a constant effort to build pride and identity in this community, but it is growing.”

Neighborhood Network will continue to develop Middlebury to help the people feel like they are a part of something bigger than themselves – where they can find pride and hope. Keep Akron Beautiful is thankful that we get to work alongside such a wonderful organization and see firsthand the transformation happening in a neighborhood that is so close to home.

Neighborhood Network has partnered with several local organizations to create a team called the “What’s Next Committee.” They are creating a survey for Middlebury to find neighborhood assets and challenges, and are hosting several community events to empower the neighbors to steer decisions happening in their own back yard. Keep up with Neighborhood Network’s Facebook Page  to see the survey when it’s ready, and for upcoming events. Neighborhood Network will host Night out Against Crime on August 1 from 5p.m. to 7 p.m. (intersection of E Market and S Arlington)!

Red, White and Green – How to Have an Eco-Friendly 4th of July

By Johanna Barnowski, Intern

Summer holidays are a great time to celebrate and spend time with family and friends. If you plan on having a party, here are some tips to make your holiday more eco-friendly!

1. Decorations

Backyard barbecues don’t require a lot of decorations, but it’s hard to resist those red, white and blue centerpieces and banners in the $5 and under section at Target. This year, make your own decorations by upcycling!

You can reuse your old k-cups to make a wreath or pop a painted cup over bulbs in a string of lights.

Using living centerpieces is also quick and easy! Pick up a mini tree, wrap the bottom in burlap, tie a ribbon around it and you’ll be set.

Save your decorations for next year or swap with family and friends!

2. Reusable Dishware

It can be easy to pull out the paper plates and plastic cups when you have a large group, but the downside is there are long-lasting consequences for our environment. It is best to use reusable dishes. If you want to use disposable dishware, you can still wash and reuse it at your next party.

Another fun alternative is having your guests bring their own plates! Everyone would be responsible for their own dishes, and the hodge-podge of plates makes it interesting.

3. Use Large Water Containers

We know it’s important to drink water, but it doesn’t have to be out of plastic water bottles! It can be convenient to buy disposable water bottles, but it would save so much waste to use a water jug and reusable cups instead.

Just like with the dishes – guests can bring their own cups!

4. Plan Your Recycling

If you are going to use recyclable dishware, make sure you plan ahead to have a designated recycling bin.  Make sure your bin is clearly marked so your guests know to use it! For information on recycling in the city of Akron click here.

Happy fourth of july Photo.