The Petal Area Chamber of Commerce is seeking volunteers for the Pick Up Petal Community Clean Up Day, which is aimed at eliminating litter on the Friendly City’s two main throughways.
The event, which is sponsored by the Cosmopolitan Club of Petal, will run from 9 a.m.-noon Nov. 2, with volunteers beginning at the Dirt Cheap parking lot at 334 North Main Street. Participants can sign in at that spot and begin the trek down Main Street and Central Avenue to pick up trash.
“First of all, it’s absolutely (meant) to clean up our city and to make it look nicer for the holidays,” said Valerie Wilson, executive director of the Petal Area Chamber of Commerce. “But the second motivation is to try to bring awareness to the public that we all need to do our part in keeping our streets clean.
“Hopefully, (motorists who litter) will feel a little bit guilty if they see someone else picking up their trash on the street, and maybe think twice about throwing something out of their car. Or maybe they can secure things better in the back of their trucks, so that our streets can look beautiful without having volunteers go out and clean the mess.”
Volunteers are asked to wear closed-toe shoes, pants, sunscreen and gloves, and anyone who has a “trash picker” is encouraged to bring that along. Officials will provide garbage bags for the collected trash. Volunteers also should bring their own water bottles.
While officials will concentrate on Main Street and Central Avenue, the exact route will depend on the number of volunteers that show up.
“We’ll see how far we can get,” Wilson said. “I hope that we will be able to get from one end of South Main to North Main Street, and from Central Avenue from the railroad tracks all the way to the (Evelyn Gandy Parkway).
“If we can do that, that’s our goal, but that depends on the number of people that show up to help us.”
Wilson said in years past, the Pick Up Petal Community Clean Up Day has had a pretty good turnout.
“We’ve had help from some of our business partners in the past – Mississippi Power has always been a strong partner with us,” she said. “Camp Shelby Youth Challenge has helped us out in the past, and we plan on them being with us this year.
“We have had soldiers from the 177th Armored Brigade to come help us. So we reach out beyond our city limits here; we invite other groups to come help us, and they usually do a great job with this. The Cosmopolitan Club will be helping us with this project this year, in particular.”