Clean the community, now and always

Spring cleaning time is here, and tomorrow is village cleanup day in Lake Placid and Saranac Lake. We urge you to help out and do your part for your community.

Now that the (hopefully) last snow has melted and green vegetation is racing to grow by the hour, we can no longer procrastinate on picking up the garbage we see all over. Granted, we should be cleaning all year round (more on that in a minute), but a big sweep is needed now, before the bulk of our summer visitors arrive.

Saranac Lake

The name has changed — it’s now Downtown Spring Clean-Up Day — and the Downtown Advisory Board is now the lead organizer, with help from the Women’s Civic Chamber, Parks and Trails Advisory Board, Village Improvement Society, Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and other organizations. But basically, this annual cleanup is the same as it ever was.

Volunteers will meet at the Berkeley Green at the central downtown intersection of Main Street and Broadway, starting at 10 a.m. Bring cleaning equipment such as brooms, dust pans, rakes and shovels. Garbage bags will be provided, and disposable gloves were generously donated by Coakley Home and Hardware.

Cleanup will go until 2 p.m., when all volunteers are invited to the chamber Welcome Center in the Harrietstown Town Hall for refreshments. For more information, call 518-891-4150.

Lake Placid

The Lake Placid Garden Club leads the annual Lake Placid Village Clean Up from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. You can register between 9 to 10 a.m. at the Mirror Lake Beach House on Parkside Drive. Those who wanted to clean up particular areas were supposed to register before this past Monday, but please show up anyway and clean wherever you’re needed.

This cleanup event features a scavenger hunt. Three lucky volunteers will receive prizes for finding golden eggs hidden around town.

Both children and adults are encouraged to take part. Garbage bags will be provided. Please bring your own gloves. At the end, volunteers can return to the Beach House for refreshments starting at 11:45 a.m.

The National Weather Service predicts a 40 percent chance of rain or snow Saturday and highs in the 50s — not ideal, but not the worst. If the Lake Placid event is canceled, it will make announcements on its Facebook page and WSLP radio at 93.3 FM.

“Plogging”

The Lake Placid Village Clean Up’s Facebook page on Thursday posted a video promoting a wonderful thing. Its nifty name, “plogging,” might make you think it’s some niche activity, but actually it’s super-simple — it’s just picking up garbage while jogging or walking.

From now on, every time you go out for a jog or a walk, take a couple of bags with you, and perhaps some gloves as well, and pick up trash as you see it. On top of the benefits of walking or running, you’ll get more exercise every time you bend or squat to pick up litter.

It’s so obvious, when you think about it.

“With all the active people in Lake Placid, let’s make this a thing,” Lake Placid Village Clean Up wrote on its Facebook page.

Sadly, it’s rare to see someone carrying a garbage bag while jogging, or walking a dog or baby, or going for an evening stroll, or walking to and from work or school. Let’s make it normal.

A group effort

Keeping our community clean takes each of us. Everyone who tosses a bottle or wrapper or cigarette butt on the ground makes work for someone else. Please, if you do such things, stop. Yet we don’t have much expectation of getting through to these people, which means the rest of us need to step up and pick up trash at every opportunity. We can’t expect anyone else to do it for us.

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