Marquis of Debris: Why not get involved in cleanup Saturday?

Event kicks off in Kingsessing

Posted: April 13, 2012

HUNDREDS of volunteers will span the city Saturday armed with trash bags, paint, brooms and more for the fifth annual Philly Spring Cleanup - an event that in years past has drawn a total of 45,000 people who removed 2,900 tons of trash from Philadelphia's streets and vacant lots.

Carlton Williams, deputy streets commissioner, said past Spring Cleanups have taught him that tackling litter and dumping, and changing the collective mind-set concerning these pervasive quality-of-life issues, can't be done in a single day.

The theme for this year's cleanup is "Keep Up the Sweep Up," which is aimed at encouraging Philadelphians to use the event as a launching point to continue beautifying their neighborhoods and others all year long.

Pursuing sustainable solutions to litter and dumping will come through the city strengthening bonds with community groups, nonprofits and others who have a vested interest in their neighborhoods, Williams said.

"My hope is to see the cleanup get to a point where we are picking up less trash and doing more beautification and greening projects," he said, mentioning mural painting and tree planting as two worthwhile alternatives to trash removal.

The event is set to kick off at the Kingsessing Recreation Center at 9 a.m. Saturday on Kingsessing Avenue near 49th Street.

Mayor Nutter will get his hands dirty, leading volunteers in a mural-painting project at the recreation center before visiting some of the 346 cleanup sites participating in the event.

Meanwhile, 8th District Councilwoman Cindy Bass will team up with SEPTA officials and volunteers in East Germantown to remove trash from a short dumping site on Rufe Street between Bringhurst Lane and Queen Lane, near the Wister train station, at 9 a.m.

To find a Spring Cleanup event near you, visit

Two weeks after Saturday's cleanup, Keep Philadelphia Beautiful will offer neat freaks yet another opportunity to beautify a slice of the city.

On April 28, KPB will launch its Day of Action to spruce up Germantown's Happy Hollow Recreation Center, which opened in 1911 and is the oldest rec center in Philadelphia.

The event runs from 9 a.m. to noon on Wayne Avenue near Abbotsford Avenue.

For more information on the KPB Day of Action, email executive director Phoebe Coles at

If you're fed up with litter and want to talk trash, contact the Marquis at 215-854-5914 or You can also find the Marquis on Facebook.

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