ADDISON COUNTY / BRANDON — As thousands of people pitch in to clear trash off of Vermont roadsides on Saturday, May 7, they will be observing a Green Up Day tradition established by Gov. Deane Davis in 1970.
After members of each community package litter into Green Up bags for pick-up along newly clean roadsides, towns across the county will observe the 31st annual spring-cleaning event with cookouts, community dinners and raffles.
In Leicester, Green Up coordinator Kate Briggs said she’s approaching the day with extra vigor, since the town, like many in Addison County, is observing its 250th anniversary this summer.
“We want this (day) to be really green, and we want the town to keep getting greener throughout the summer,” said Briggs.
With that in mind, Briggs said she is encouraging townspeople to view Green Up Day as the beginning of a larger effort to keep the town’s roads clean and beautiful.
And Briggs said she is also bringing a new angle to this year’s Green Up Day — she is encouraging townspeople to reuse their large plastic bags from wood pellet packaging for trash pickup. This, she said, will allow those who heat their homes with wood to get one more use out of the bags, which must otherwise be thrown out.
“Pellet bags can’t be recycled, and Green Up Bags can’t either,” she said.
Briggs said that she expects to have the participation of approximately 100 people, and that the town usually collects several hundred bags over the course of the Green Up weekend, which always coincides with the first Saturday in May.
“I think we have pretty widespread participation,” she said.
Briggs has already held an assembly at Leicester Central School to encourage students to get involved in beautifying their town on May 7, and there will be a cookout that day and a raffle with prizes from area businesses.
Information on how other towns are celebrating Green Up Day can be found at greenupvermont.org. Look for a town-by-town list of Green Up Day coordinators in Monday’s Addison Independentand at www.addisonindependent.com.
Reporter Andrea Suozzo is at email@example.com.