Taking pride in the community

May 19, 2022 | Mountain Events

Crestline cleanup day a big success

By Mary-Justine Lanyon

It was an idea that sprang from Crestline being named an International City of Peace.

At that celebration, Rudy Westervelt – who spearheaded that effort – suggested holding a day when the entire community, not just the area surrounding Lake Gregory, would be cleaned up by its residents.
On Saturday, May 7, folks turned out to do just that.

According to Michelle Hake, president of the Crestline Chamber of Commerce, about 60 people participated, with representatives from the Lake Gregory Yacht Club, the Lions Club, the Crestline Chamber of Commerce, the Crestline-Lake Gregory Rotary Club, EarlyAct students as well as individuals and families.

“It was wonderful to see people taking pride in their community and putting in the time to pull weeds and pick up trash,” Hake said. We have a ways to go, but it was a great start to what will hopefully become a bigger movement of bettering the Crestline community. It was a great initial turnout for something we hope to see become a recurring event.”

Goodwin’s donated pastries and supplies and the Lake Gregory Co. assisted with the organization.
Groups picked up trash around the lake trails, on Lake Gregory Drive from Highway 18 down to the lake, on Lake Drive and in Top Town.

The EarlyAct students from Valley of Enchantment Elementary School met at the skate park, where they picked up trash, crawling under the ramps to make sure they got every piece of paper. They then moved on to the play area next to the tennis courts. Not only did they pick up trash there, they pulled all the weeds.

As they looked at the bare ground, they came up with the ideas of adding painted rocks and a fairy garden to the area. They plan to ask permission from the Lake Gregory Co. to do that.

As part of their cleanup efforts, the EarlyAct students then installed the fishing line recycling bins they had made as part of their community service.

The idea came from fifth-grader Hayden Greene, who had seen similar containers at the beach. He was aware that tangled fishing line often ends up on the shore of Lake Gregory, posing a hazard to ducks and other animals.

The students researched how to make the containers and found decals online, which they ordered. With the help of their teachers – Katie Nicholson, Jessica Mazakas and Stephanie Plemons and Rotarian Bill Mellinger – they assembled the recycling bins.

After they finished cleaning up the skate park and play area, they walked to the docks at Lake Gregory where Brent Darling, the operations manager for the Lake Gregory Co., took them out on the lake to the four spots where he had already installed wooden posts.

With Darling’s help, students took turns drilling holes through the posts and into the plastic pipe. They then bolted the recycling bins to the posts.

As they walked from the boat to the posts, several students picked up fishing line they found on the ground. They then put it into the bins they had made.

A couple of anglers were fascinated by what was going on and were delighted to learn what the students had created.

When Hake heard what the EarlyAct students had done, her reaction was, “That’s awesome!”



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