Clean Up Day set for May 3

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 7, 2003

Long-time Ironton resident Randy Lilly is gearing up to do some spring cleaning May 3 and would like the community to join in for the Ironton Volunteer Clean Up Day.

Each year volunteers plant trees and flowers, pick up trash, clean up the parks, paint and do anything else to make the city look more presentable, Lilly said.

In its fourth year,

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the annual effort would not be possible without donations and the work of 900 volunteers over the past three years, Clean Up Day founder Lilly said. He hopes to build off the past success to make this year's efforts the best yet.

"The strength of a community is the willingness of its citizens to really take part and make the town a better place," he said. "Volunteer Day is one of those things that can really do that."

Lilly said they have often end up working all around the city including the riverfront, all the parks, the city entrances. One area that they worked on in the past was painting all the playground equipment at Beechwood Park.

This year Lilly hopes to refresh everything they have done in past years and also plant about 500 flowers and about 10 Cleveland pears and anything else.

"We are only limited by the number of people available to help us accomplish this," he said.

Lilly said the project got its start after he served on the Ironton City Council from 1993 to 1997 and saw the city was facing some tough economic challenges.

"While serving on council, I thought we needed to get people involved in the community and to really take pride in the city," he said. "A couple of years later we lost 1,200 jobs and needed something to jump start the community and create a positive image for potential businesses."

Lilly said that volunteers in the past three years include civic groups, schools, churches and concerned citizens. So far, about 100 people have signed on to participate this year including the National Honors Society and the Kids Care club from Ironton High School.

"We really want to get the kids involved," he said. "If you want them to have a sense of community you have to start young."

Mayor Bob Cleary said the city has always been supportive of Lilly's efforts and that he is personally looking forward to helping out again.

"I hope a lot more citizens participate," he said. "It is the spring kick-off and absolutely makes a difference in how the city looks. It is definitely a worthwhile project for the city."

Anyone who would like to volunteer or let him know of a particular area that needs work, can contact Lilly at 532-0010 or Mike Corn at 533-2676. Anyone who would like to make a donation can contact Rich Mountain at 532-8755.