Annual cleanup event set in April
— The snow might be falling and the temperatures are brutal, but spring is not far away.
With that, plans for the second annual Honesdale Clean & Green are starting to take shape.
The event was launched last year and was an overwhelming success.
It is sponsored by the Greater Honesdale Partnership.
This year's event will take place on Saturday, April 20, and will be headquartered at the Grace Episcopal Church on Church Street.
Registration will be from 7:30-8:30 a.m. The cleanup will be from 8:30 a.m. to noon followed by a free lunch for all of the volunteers.
Members of the volunteer board which organizes the event met for the first time this year on Monday of this week to start the organization effort.
Last year, nearly 300 people came out and helped pick up trash and debris from the borough.
"We were very pleased with how many people came out and pitched in last year," said Greg Little, a member of the committee. "It was great to see so many community members come together."
During Monday's meeting, the group discussed how to better handle the sign up the morning of the event. With so many people volunteering last year, organizers were overwhelmed in trying to get everyone signed up and assigned an area of the borough to clean.
This year, there will be more sign-in stations at the church. There will also be better flow of people once they do sign up to volunteer.
Once people sign up, they are then given gloves and garbage bags, which are provided through the state of Pennsylvania's cleanup program.
From there, volunteers go to their assigned areas and begin picking up and bagging trash and debris.
Members of the Honesdale Borough Public Works Department then pick up the bags throughout the morning.
"We thought it worked pretty well last year," said Little, "considering it was the first time we had done the event."
Another part of the event is giving out door prizes, which was a big hit with the volunteers last year. The grand prize last year was a riding lawn mower and organizers are working on having the same kind of grand prize this year.
Many area businesses helped out the cause by donating prizes for the event. The prizes are given out after lunch. Each person who volunteers is issued a ticket in the morning and then those are drawn at random to give away the prizes.
While the people are picking up the trash and debris, committee members and public works employees also hand out water, which was also donated at last year's event.
Page 2 of 2 - "We realize that picking up trash isn't the most glamorous thing in the world," said Little. "So we try to put a little fun and excitement into the event. It was just fantastic that so many people were there so early in the morning wanting to help make Honesdale a cleaner place."
Also during last year's event a work crew from the Wayne County Correctional Facility was dispatched and cleaned up the area along the Lackawaxen River in Honesdale.
For this year's event, organizers are going to try to do more pre-registrations in order to streamline the Saturday morning more.
Official registration has not yet started, however, if a group of people want to volunteer to do a certain area, you can contact the group via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
"We realize that some people would like to do certain areas," said Little. "And we think that is great. If they can contact us now, we can get that arranged before we open up registration to everyone."
He also said any local groups or organizations who would like to get involved this year can use the same email address to contact Honesdale Clean & Green 2013.
If you would like more information about the event, contact Little at 253-3055, ext. 315 or the Greater Honesdale Partnership at 253-5492.
More information about the event will be released in the coming weeks, including the announcement of prizes and other information.