Cleaning Up The Town Center

By Eve Keller

On July 4th, the first Saturday of July, I had the great pleasure to participate with the Friends of Mt. Baker Town Center Clean Up.  Project facilitator for the Adopt-A-Street clean up effort, Anne Miller, loaded us with supplies at the Mt. Baker Light Rail Station and soon after I headed up Rainier Ave. to start collecting trash at the 23rd and Rainier bus stop.

What I learned:

  • Wear sunscreen on the back of your neck, along with your sun hat. I spent a lot of  time looking down as I collected garbage and after a while could feel the sun wreak havoc on my unprotected neck.
  • Try and use the official Adopt-A-Street yellow bags as much as possible (I went home for more black garbage bags after the two yellow ones Anne had given me were filled). I believe it makes passersby more comfortable to see someone with an official yellow bag collecting, rather than a possible oddball rummaging around in the bushes with a regular garbage bag.
  • I personally intend to focus on making bus stops less dirty. A lot of people use them, and I believe those waiting for buses seemed more relaxed in the cleaner environment.
  • Pick up more yellow bags than you think you will use, by two. They can always be put to good use picking up garbage during the interim weeks between first Saturdays.

–     Keep in touch with Anne about where to deposit filled garbage bags for collection.

Please join our effort for a few hours on the first Saturday mornings of each month, year round,  to collect garbage and say hello to neighbors, at the Mt. Baker Light Rail Station.  The Adopt-A-Street program supplies all of the garbage collecting gear you will use, and picks up the yellow filled garbage bags afterwards.  It allows for easy, feel good moments that may last longer than you think.  The streets will look cleaner and you will be appreciated for your efforts.  A homeless gentleman and a woman waiting for the bus individually thanked me during my few hours of collecting.  I still appreciate those spoken gestures, ten days later.

Also, you might find a diamond ring, as I did within my first few minutes collecting.  It resides now in the Lost and Found at the King St. Station, so spread the word if you know someone who has lost a very simple, sweet but real diamond ring.  There is a sign posted at the bus stop mentioning the found ring plus the King St. lost and found phone number.

The first Saturday morning of the month clean up efforts are a great thing.  I hope you can join us and experience the reward of collecting garbage for yourself.

Eve Keller

Mt. Baker Resident and newly minted Garbage Geek

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