The Keep America Beautiful Great American Cleanup™ (GAC) is one of the largest community service events in the nation. GAC takes place nationwide during the spring as part of Earth Day celebrations and prompts individuals to take greater responsibility for their local environment by conducting grassroots community service projects that engage volunteers, local businesses, and civic leaders.
More than 1,300 volunteers took part in community cleanup and beautification projects across this city this morning as Mayor Jerry Dyer’s Beautify Fresno program celebrated its second Great American Cleanup as part of its affiliation with Keep America Beautiful. A total of 12,780 pounds of trash and litter were removed from streets, parks, highway embankments and riverfronts in 18 locations, while also planting trees and removing graffiti in a two-hour period.
The Great American Cleanup was sponsored by Mayor Jerry Dyer’s One Fresno Foundation, Amazon, Southwest Airlines, Lowe’s, ULTA Beauty, Producers Dairy, OUTFRONT Media, Nalchajian Orthodontics, Caglia Environmental, Mid Valley Disposal, Realty Concepts, Allbritten Plumbing, Affinity Trucking Center, the Downtown Fresno Partnership, Keep California Beautiful, One Putt Broadcasting, the Fresno Grizzlies, and Tree Fresno.
The projects were made possible through the support of some of Fresno’s top organizations and businesses, including the Downtown Fresno Partnership, Fresno State University Marketing Classes, the Bridge Church, Goldstein’s Mortuary and Delicatessen, the Tower District Marketing Committee, Highway City Community Development Corporation, Fresno Pacific University, San Joaquin River Parkway and Conservation Trust, Lifebridge Community Church, Southeast Fresno Community Economic Development Association’s (SEFCEDA), Hidden Wealth Foundation, New Covenant Community Church, Every Neighborhood Partnership, AmeriCorps, Image Church, and the Fresno City College Fire Academy.
Beautify Fresno is one of the Mayor Jerry Dyer’s top priorities with a mission to inspire everyone to take pride in their community and to show the community that we can all take action to make Fresno a cleaner, greener, better place to live. “We have a mission to inspire people to make a difference in our community and we’re seeing a tremendous response, as evidenced by the record turnout today,” said Mayor Dyer. “It’s a movement that means something, not only to the volunteers who give their time and energy week in and week out, but to the residents and business owners that see a positive change in the way our city looks. It’s a joy to watch Beautify Fresno take hold and grow.”
The projects included cleanups in historic areas such as the Brewery District downtown, the Highway City district, the Tower District, and the area around Community Regional Medical Center. Volunteers also cleaned up along corridors along Blackstone between Shaw and Bullard, Ventura and Kings Canyon, and the Fresno State area around Cedar and Shaw. Other locations included the areas around Fink White Park and Lions Skate Park, Fresno Pacific University, and Ewing and Rowell Elementary Schools.
Other projects had specific interests. The Fresno City College Fire Academy led a group of 40 volunteers who removed graffiti and trash from the easement on the east side of Highway 168 near McKinley Avenue. On the north end of Fresno, 90 volunteers joined the River Parkway Trust to pick up litter that has accumulated in the River West area along the San Joaquin River and nearby ponds at the Spano River Ranch, while the River Tree Volunteers used kayaks to remove trash from the riverbanks at Riverbottom Park. As a special project, the Beautify Fresno Club at San Joaquin Memorial High School picked up litter and planted trees on their campus this morning with help from Tree Fresno.
Caltrans once again joined the spirit of the Great American Cleanup by hosting its own separate cleanup up project for the second straight year, with 30 of their employees working along westbound State Route 180 between Cedar and Clovis Avenues in three separate groups between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. today to pick up trash off the highway.
“Congratulations to the City of Fresno for another successful Great American Cleanup engaging hundreds of volunteers in making the city a cleaner and greener place to live. Thank you to the City, California Climate Action Corps, and all the partnering organizations for making this day of action possible,” said California Chief Service Officer Josh Fryday. “This is a prime example of Californians answering the call to serve and making a difference in their community. Let’s continue to set a national example and lead the way forward,” said Fryday.
Following the completion of the cleanup and beautification projects, participants were invited to an outdoor “thank you” rally in the H Street parking lot, across from Chukchansi Park, from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. with food trucks from Fresno Street Eats, music and activities.
Beautify Fresno Presenting Sponsors:
2022 Great American Cleanup Sponsors:
Affinity Truck Center
Mid Valley Disposal
Downtown Fresno Partnership
Keep California Beautiful