Residents help Demopolis celebrate Earth Day

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 3, 2006

A power wheel, some tires, a few car bumpers. Sound like useful items? Well apparently their former owners didn’t think so because these were just some of the items left behind for volunteers to pick up during Demopolis’ 10th annual Earth Day.

With Amy Duckett, LeyAnn Bennett, Kelly Hannah, and Amanda Smith leading the way Saturday morning, approximately 85 parents, students, and teachers came out under the cloudy weather to make the city a cleaner place and double last year’s 47 man participation.

“We’ve done it every year it’s been happening, except one year. We just like to get up and come do our part,” Demopolis librarian Connie McPherson said.

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“We canvassed the schools and the stadium, over in front of Gaineswood. We really tried to stick with the school areas.”

“I had to pick up a diaper,” young participant Zoie McPherson said about her family’s search for trash around the neighborhood as she made a disgusted face.

But of all the items participants gathered, first time Earth Day participant Sandra Ransom said cigarette butts were the hardest to pick up and they take 11 years to disintegrate as Duckett added.

“Mrs. Duckett came to the school and asked for those interested in the environment to come out, so I brought my grandson and granddaughter out with me,” Ransom, a DHS employee, said about her decision to come out for the first time. And even those the pesky cigarette butts were a pain to collect, Ransom said she has plans to do it again next year. Ransom added that citizens shouldn’t wait to clean up the town, but that

“we need to make Earth Day every day.”

As an extra credit opportunity Ms. Meadows, Mr. Tolliver, Coach Sprinkle, Ms. Tyson, Ms. Nettles, Mrs. Renner and Mrs. Phillips, all area teachers, were responsible for many of the students coming out on their own, Duckett said. Also participating in the day were ROTC members, Boy Scout Pack 41 and as always, local families.

“All of the volunteers except for about six of them were all between the ages of 4 and 18,” Duckett said.

Almost an hour before the operation was to shut down, organizer Amy Duckett said Arrow already had to come empty the dumpster next to City Landing once.

“This year we collected 986 bags of trash total,” Duckett said. “I think that’s the largest amount of trash we’ve had ever.”

Duckett would also like to give a special thanks to the event’s sponsors: Southern Tank Leasing and Suttles Trucking, Robertson Banking Co., Doric South, AMA Designs and Clear Mountain Spring Water, BankTrust and Dusty Bird Realty. She is also grateful to Subway for providing lunch for the hard-working garbage families.

For pictures of the winners from Earth Day, see tomorrow’s Times.