The Lititz morning crew

By on May 7, 2014

Fifty volunteers tidy town

Amy, Evan and Guy Kling volunteer as a family. (photos by Stephen Seeber)

Amy, Evan and Guy Kling volunteer as a family. (photos by Stephen Seeber)

Evan Kling gave up a full Saturday morning of video game enrichment for the betterment of Lititz. That’s a relevant sacrifice for a Kissel Hill fifth grader.

OK, so maybe his parents, Guy and Amy, made him get up early, grab a broom and head to Borough Hall for the downtown cleanup roll call at 8 a.m. sharp. But he didn’t seem to mind at all. Flanked by 49 other community volunteers, his sense of hometown pride seemed to swell as he stood stoically, dust pan in hand, on the east side curb of South Broad Street.

Or maybe he was just tired.

“Would you normally be awake right now, on a Saturday morning?” asked the Record Express.

“Sometimes,” he said after a thoughtful pause.

“No,” laughed his parents, simultaneously and without hesitation.

But hey, he was there, pitching in as part of the Great American Cleanup. His effort helps to “create clean, beautiful public places, reduce waste and increase recycling, generate positive impact on local economies and inspire generations of environmental stewards.” That’s actually part of the mission statement for Keep America Beautiful, the nonprofit that orchestrates this nationwide cleanup effort.

Young Evan Kling was one of 50 here who rose (early) to the occasion.

“It’s great!” said Venture Lititz’s Kelly Withum of the volunteer turnout. “More than I expected.”

After a briefing by Withum on the front steps of the borough building, teams of do-gooders dispersed in different directions to collect litter, sweep debris, clean curbs, weed and mulch tree wells.

Kristen Holweger was one of 50 volunteers who helped clean up downtown Lititz last weekend.

Kristen Holweger was one of 50 volunteers who helped clean up downtown Lititz last weekend.

“Lititz seems relatively tidy already,” suggested the Record Express. “Is there really that much to do?”

“Actually, there is,” Withum pointed out. “After this winter, there are a lot of cinders and tree debris. The biggest thing that we find are cigarette butts. It’s amazing how many butts get picked up.”

Two groups in particular came out in force to help with the cleanup, Members 1st Credit Union and the Warwick High School softball team.

Dave Hurst, Lititz branch manager for Members 1st, brought 10 of his employees.

“We thought this was a great way to be involved in the Lititz community, to reach out and provide a resource,” he said.

Mark Hough, Warwick’s softball coach, recruited 11 players and coaches. The only absentees were girls who were getting their hair and nails done for the senior prom later that evening.

“This is one of the little things we can do in terms of projects to give back to the community,” he said as his team swept the sidewalks in front of Dosie Dough and AM Jewelry.

The rest of the volunteer workforce was made up of families and individuals. The Klings participated as a family, but they also run a local cleaning business called SparKling Klean.

“We’re just here to help our small town,” said Guy.

And there were some new faces too.

Michael and Sheila O’Rourke moved here from the Harrisburg area in January.

“We’ve been so excited about this community and this town,” Sheila said while unloading gardening tools from their car, “and we thought this was a great opportunity to meet people and join in the community spirit.”

Judy Springham, another new resident (one year in June), heard about the cleanup in Record Express. Thanks for reading, Judy!

By lunchtime on May 3, the downtown sparkled with pride, not a butt in sight. Let’s keep it that way.

Stephen Seeber is the associate editor for the Lititz Record Express. He welcomes your questions and comments and can be reached at sseeber.eph@lnpnews.com or at 721-4423.

 

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