Kingsport Times News Friday, August 22, 2014
Local News

Volunteers clean up Greenbelt as part of Earth Day events

April 21st, 2007 11:39 pm by CLIFFORD JEFFERY

KINGSPORT - A group of 135 volunteers descended on the Greenbelt in Kingsport Saturday morning to clean up the linear trail.

"We wanted to make people aware of the importance of keeping our environment clean," said Keep Kingsport Beautiful Chair Teresa Brinkley.

Brinkley headed the Great Kingsport Cleanup and Earth Day Recycling Fair.

"One man's trash is another man's treasure," was the slogan, complete with KKB members dressed as pirates.

The cleanup has been done off and on for years, Brinkley said.

"This is all part of the Great American Cleanup," she said. "We wanted to do something special for Earth Day and we thought, so many people use the Greenbelt, that this would be a great place to start."

Kingsport Public Works personnel helped with the cleanup. After volunteers bagged up trash, a city truck drove the Greenbelt, picking up the garbage bags.

Not everything could fit into a bag, Brinkley said. One young girl found a bed frame. Another person found a golf club stand. There were cans, bottles, bags and some things that some volunteers balked at picking up.

"We gave out free gloves to everyone," Brinkley said.

That was all it took for 10-year-old Hannah Rakes who showed a plastic bag with brown liquid seeping from it.

Rakes, her mother, Monica, and friend Bethany Cousins, 10, all of Mount Carmel, picked up litter along the trail while Hannah's father, Pat Rakes, collected used oil at the Stonebrook Place entrance to the Greenbelt. Rakes, owner of Chance Used Oil, recycles the old motor oil.

Prizes were handed out to the group and family who picked up the most trash. There was also a cash prize for the most unique piece of garbage.

More than 130 volunteers met in the morning. Many drove to distant sections of the Greenbelt to work.

Some sections had more trash than others, Brinkley said.

The volunteers collected 200 bags of trash, 50 tires, six shopping carts, two rafts, a headboard, a golf club stand, a heater, a car motor, a grill, two bicycles, chicken wire and numerous boards.

Going with the "one man's trash is another man's treasure," theme, Brinkley said cardboard, oil, batteries and trash cans were all taken for recycling.

Kingsport is going to the automated trash collection system, Brinkley said. Everyone is getting these new trash bins and Goodwill Industries is collecting the old ones so they can be recycled.

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