A friendly competition last Wednesday cleared more than 700 pounds of litter from local roadsides.
Keep Dawson County Beautiful’s inaugural Cleaning Spring event challenged teams to try to collect the greatest amount of litter in honor of the Great American Cleanup.
“We usually collect an average of around 615 pounds of litter during the Great American Cleanup, which lasts three months and includes several events,” said Cathy Brooks, executive director for Keep Dawson County Beautiful.
“Participants collected nearly 700 pounds of litter in just two hours not including tires, mattresses or other debris.”
Overall, volunteers picked up 138 discarded tires, 23 bags of trash, three bags of aluminum cans, eight bags of plastic bottles, two mattresses, three recliners and an office chair.
Other items collected included more than 20 pounds of shingles, several blocks of Styrofoam, a vacuum cleaner, a satellite dish, one mailbox, several metal posts and a street sign.
“I’m overjoyed by the enthusiasm and commitment these folks have shown for our community,” Brooks said.
Etowah Water and Sewer Authority’s team was the overall winner for the 70 tires they picked up at various dumping areas around the county.
For their efforts, organizers awarded the team $100 to donate to the charity of its choice. The team chose the Veterans Affairs of Dawson County.
The Kiwanis Club was awarded for the most difficult item to retrieve after team member Becky Holbrook said she encountered several snakes while picking up dozens of old tires throughout the county.
“We’ve always supported this county in clean and beautiful efforts,” said Holbrook. “Anything to help this community stay clean and beautiful, we are for and support 100 percent.”
At one time, Kiwanis members were responsible for clearing litter from the outlet mall south to the county line on Ga. 400. “But traffic got too heavy and dangerous,” Holbrook said.
Members of the Dawson County Woman’s Club Conservation department volunteered during the event to judge and calculate points for the teams.
“The Dawson County Woman’s Club focuses on recycling as an opportunity to serve our community. This was an ideal event and we were thrilled to partner with Keep Dawson County Beautiful and Etowah Water and Sewer Authority,” said club co-president Cindy Jensen. “This event matches our club’s dedication to preserving the beauty of our county.”
Keep Dawson County Beautiful’s next event will be 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Dawsonville Walmart.
Dawson County residents may bring personal computers, printers, monitors, stereo equipment, radios, telephones, circuit boards, fax machines and many other electronic items for electronic recycling.
A $5 donation per car or truckload is requested. A $10 removal fee applies for televisions only and no console TVs will be accepted. Volunteers will be onsite to unload vehicles.
“Keep Dawson County Beautiful embraces the vision that each of us holds an obligation to preserve and protect our environment,” Brooks said. “Through our everyday choices and actions, we collectively have a huge impact on our world. It’s really a simple concept, but one with far reaching effects.”
For more information on electronic recycling or Keep Dawson County Beautiful, call (706) 344-3501, Ext. 255.