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Wednesday, January 15, 2020

City to celebrate 50th anniversary of Earth Day with Great Global Cleanup event

City to celebrate 50th anniversary of Earth Day with Great Global Cleanup event

For 34 years, the city has hosted a large-scale volunteer trash clean up. Over 1,000 volunteers sign up to do their part in this massive “spring cleaning.” Volunteers are assigned to locations close to home in the city's parks and open spaces, as well as along trails and roads and supporting nearby Hyland Hills Park and Recreation District. After a morning of trash collection, volunteers are invited to a free cookout lunch as a “thank you” for all of their hard work.

For many years, this event has been known as Community Pride Day, and it has been a demonstration of pride and commitment to the city. As we approach the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, the city has decided to rename our event and join in the Great Global Cleanup.

This history of community service and environmental stewardship brings out many repeat volunteers, such as Thom Mandl, who has been participating since his eldest child was little.

"My children and I have been participating in open space clean-up events for years,” said Mandl. “Not only is it a good way to give back to the community, but we always have a fun time together and make great memories!"

Families like this one—as well as church groups, scout troops, local businesses, school groups and individuals looking to give back—make up the city's large volunteer base. The city support for these events is something many volunteers find encouraging.

Patti Greene, a long time Open Space volunteer, Westminster resident and Adopt-a-Street participant is an enthusiastic trash collector.

“You know that we came out in the beginning because we feel a responsibility to the outdoors that we love, and we want to make a contribution to our community,” Greene remembers. “But we keep coming back because of [city staff]. All of the staff makes me feel that my work is necessary and significant.”

This commitment to stewardship is evident in new and old volunteers alike. Just last year, new Westminster resident and city staff member Anjelica McMahon signed her family up for the first time.

“I took my five year-old twins with me and we walked almost three miles,” Anjelica shared. “They loved learning about how they were ‘saving the fishes and birds’ from discarded plastics. It was a memorable event for all of us and we can’t wait to do it again for the 50th anniversary of Earth Day!”

On this 35th year of Open Space in Westminster, the city has renewed its commitment to these principles as Mayor Herb Atchison has signed the city on to be a Green City in 2020.

Our community-wide event is open for registration from now until April 9.

To register, please contact Open Space Specialist Kristen May at 303-658-2191 or kmay@cityofwestminster.us.

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