By Lauren Brady & Helen Dauka
At 9:30 a.m. we met our first group of volunteers at Summit Lake to stain bleachers at the baseball field and clean up litter around the lake and trail. Our six volunteers came from a group at the University of Akron called Lead Akron. Lead Akron is a leadership program at the university that helps students develop leadership skills through educational and experiential opportunities.
The group definitely showed us their leadership skills and knocked out cleaning and staining the first set of bleachers in no time! We were only able to tackle the seats of the bleachers and had to leave the floorboard unstained until the seats were dry enough to walk on. By the time the second set of seats were stained on another set of bleachers, it started to sprinkle. Instead of trying to stain the floorboards from our first set of bleachers, we moved on to collecting litter.
Each volunteer was given a “litter-grabber” and a trash bag and/or recycle bag. Unfortunately, most of the litter found was along the vegetation around the lake. Our volunteers were able to collect 6 large bags of trash and one bag full of recyclables before the Roo Express came back to pick them up After sorting through some of the trash bags, much of the litter was able to be diverted into our recycling bags!
Thank you, Lead Akron, for all of your help at the Summit Lake cleanup this year!
The next Make A Difference Day Project we stopped at was on Kenmore Boulevard. Julie Ann Sweet really began tackling community beautification long ago, acting as a citizen committee member during the Clean Up Akron Month Summit Lake Cleanup.
Julie Ann organized a group of volunteers, including the Cardinal Football team. Volunteers collected litter from the neighborhoods, winterized the flowerbeds that run down the middle of Kenmore Boulevard, and more! KAB was able to loan this group the litter cleanup bags, gloves, safety vests and Purell!
Finally, we rolled our Litter & Illegal Dump Trailer into Davenport Park where we met our next group of University of Akron Students. This group was made up of mostly chemical engineering students! Once again, we were amazed at their hard work and efficiency. Not only were they able to repaint the door frames on the shelter of the park, they were able to spruce up a concession stand by the baseball field, eradicate litter from the park and remove the leaves that had overwhelmed the tennis courts.
While KAB could not be there in person, our Community Pride Trailer made its appearance at the 2015 Trash N’ Treat Canal Clean-Up with the Ohio Erie Canalway Coalition.
Check out more of the OECC cleanup on their Facebook album!