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Community Members Pitch in For Earth Week Tasks

OSWEGO, NY – Several groups and individuals rolled up their sleeves over the weekend to help clean up the area.

A trio of volunteers picks up trash along the Oswego River
A trio of volunteers picks up trash along the Oswego River

“Today (April 22) is Earth Day,” said Richard Drosse, Earth Week coordinator for the Oswego County Environmental Management Council. “In recognition, the council invites individuals, schools and groups to participate in Oswego County’s Earth Week, April 19 – 28.”

In Oswego, several members of AmeriCorps volunteered to clean up the grounds around the Human Concerns Center on East Fourth Street.

Some AmeriCorps workers rake up dead leaves at the Human Concerns Center.
Some AmeriCorps workers rake up dead leaves at the Human Concerns Center.

“A few years ago, I was in AmeriCorps, and we came down and did the wood (on the front deck) trim. Since then, I have kept in contact with AmeriCorps,” explained Deb Deeb, Human Concerns director. “Carrie (Victory of AmeriCorps) always asks if we need some help. They do an awesome job.”

A man stopped by recently and asked if they’d like to have him clean up the yard.

Deeb told him they had a group coming over for the weekend; but if he’d like to come back another time he’d be more than welcome.

“People show up and mow our lawn (what little there is). We don’t mow it,” Deb said. “AmeriCorps has been great to us over the years. We really appreciate them and all that they do.”

Volunteers help clean out and bag garbage and debris in front of Human Concerns.
Volunteers help clean out and bag garbage and debris in front of Human Concerns.

“We do whatever we can to help,” Victory added. “We’d like to thank C&B farm and garden of Scriba for donating the mulch.”

“We raked the entire property of Human Concerns – front, back and sides. We raked and weeded the front, trimmed bushes and mulched. More than 15 bags of garbage and leaves were gathered! In not the best of weather I might add,” Victory continued.

When they were done, members went over to East Park and collected a huge pile of sticks along with some more garbage.

“We have some great, hard-working members this year who truly give back to this community. They have given both their time and hearts to those in need throughout the program year,” Victory said. “We would like to thank all of the AmeriCorps members who participated in this event: Gabrielle Vono, Kathryn Justus, Aaron Lehman, Katelyn Cusimano, Jessie Joss, Barbara Kelly and Nicole Snyder. We would also like to thank Craig Kennedy of C&B Farm and Garden for donating the mulch for this project and making it possible.”

Friday’s Minetto 4-H Club clean up was canceled due to rain.

However, the Oswego Kiwanis Club reportedly did a cleanup along Route 48 in Minetto, north of the village.

Minetto’s clean sweep went well and the Canal Lock O-3 Earth Week/Clean Sweep in Fulton did good with having 20 participants, according to Drosse.

Another Minetto youth group will be doing a roadside cleanup in about two weeks.

“Most of the litter we picked up were fast food wrapper/containers, no deposit bottles and cans, lottery tickets and empty cigarette packs, “Drosse said. “Don’t even want to talk about all the cigarette butts.”

A group of workers pose with some of the trash they cleaned up along the Oswego River front on Minetto.
A group of workers pose with some of the trash they cleaned up along the Oswego River front on Minetto.

“Our cleanup in Minetto started with a group of 25 people comprised of Minetto Elementary School students (Minetto Student Council) and parents. They worked their way from the school on County Route 8 and Community Drive down to Benson Avenue and to the beginning of the dug way, on both sides of Route 48 next to the canal,” said Nancy Praries, Minetto Beautification Committee coordinator.

On Saturday, eight members of the Minetto Beautification Committee met at the Town Hall at 9 a.m. and proceeded to clean up from Lock 5 to one mile south of Minetto Bridge both sides of Route 48 along the Oswego River and the waterway called the dugout.

“We have cleared the trash along the river’s edge, the dugout area across Route 48, the Riverview park for eight years and we are happy to report less trash than any previous year,” she said. “We hope annual events like the Canal Clean Sweep make the difference. Boy Scouts helped clean the church yard and rake gardens in the Riverview Park with the help of their leader.”