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Citizens Against Litter

August 2005 Newslitter

In this Newslitter: Shadyside is getting cleaner; Glassport next?; ...And South Side; ...And Squirrel Hill; We need more volunteers; Join us; Mellon Park and City Public Works; More trash cans on Walnut; Helping Bloomfield; Our first group "Pick Up Blitz"; Centre Avenue keeps title; Beer garden; "I Litter" awards; "Garbageville" hot spots; We're not in it for the money; Ask Mr. Litterman

Shadyside is getting cleaner

A Citizens Against Litter volunteer spent one Sunday morning not picking up litter but driving around the neighborhood inspecting. What was seen is tremendously encouraging. Most of the much-littered areas are litter-free, almost litter-free, or improving. The anti-litter effort is apparently making a difference. It's obvious, though, that more than just Citizens Against Litter volunteers are picking up. We suspect that people in VIP places are seeing this newsletter and reacting. To be specific:

Glassport next?

Our people had an inquiry last month from some residents of Glassport interested in getting a Citizens Against Litter volunteer group started. We passed along some tips and encouragement. Told them we were available to offer more suggestions. Good luck Glassport. Let us know what's happening.

...And South Side

Two of our volunteers have attended meetings with anti-litter advocates on the South Side. We made some suggestions, have offered to assist with the organization of a volunteer group, and plan to attend other meetings.

...And Squirrel Hill

The most asked question (other than, "What can we do about cigarette butts?") is: "When are you coming to Squirrel Hill?" Squirrel Hillers are convinced Forbes and Murray are the dirtiest streets in town. The litter is not just there. Serious litter is everywhere on the streets running in both directions off Murray.

We need more volunteers

We have our hands full in Shadyside for now. And we need more volunteers. To this end, Citizens Against Litter will have an information and sign up table on Walnut Street during the Sidewalk Sale, August 3rd through the 7th. We hope to talk to shoppers and strollers, answer questions and recruit volunteers.

Join us

It's easy and painless. Once we know a volunteer's address, he/she is assigned a zone near where they live. To pick up litter all one needs are a pair of gloves, a picker upper of some kind (less full bending), a supply of plastic supermarket bags stuffed into pockets, and some litter-hating passion.

Mellon Park and City Public Works

Mellon Park gets a lot of use. It collects litter but the litter is removed. Thank you Public Works. Employees not only emptied trashcans but also picked up litter around the trashcans and on the grass. They also picked up litter in the gutter and on the street and in the parking areas. This has been going on for the past month and will continue throughout the summer.

More trash cans on Walnut

Those new deep green trashcans on Walnut Street are there because of the Chamber of Commerce and the merchants. Once there were 24 trashcans, now there are 36. It's more convenient than ever for people to discard stuff in their hands. Also added along Walnut are 40 dark green matching benches. The additions are big hits with shoppers and strollers.

Helping Bloomfield

Some of us spent a couple hours in Bloomfield on Saturday, July 23, when the community celebrated Car Free Day. We picked up litter on Penn Avenue between Winebiddle and Mathilda streets and also signed up volunteers. Call it "litter lend lease". One of our volunteers lives in Bloomfield. We just returned the favor. The sponsor's message: reduce the use of single occupancy vehicles.

Our first group "Pick Up Blitz"

Six of us participated on Saturday morning, July 9. It was fun. It was productive. We concentrated on Highland Ave at Walnut, over the bridge to Center, past Whole Foods to Negley. We spent a good deal of time picking up litter in two previously ignored fenced parking lots. These private lots were a mess. Looked like they haven't been touched in years. We filled 70 shopping bags from Highland and Center of which 40 bags were from the parking lots. The usual: glass and plastic bottles, soft drink and coffee cups, food leftovers, bags, wrappers, tissues, yellowed and fresh newspapers, cardboard, cigarette packs, six-pack cartons, clothes, shoes and small car parts. We even found a VCR. During our inspection later that month we saw fresh litter there. We'll keep an eye on them. If the parking lots are ignored of clean up, we'll notify the County Health Department.

Centre Avenue keeps title

Shadyside can't be proud of Centre Avenue. Centre Avenue is the most littered street in Shadyside. Hands down. Granted it's the longest along with Fifth, but still. The gutter in front of Shadyside Hospital is probably the most littered section on all of Centre. Hint. Hint. Hint. Hey, a couple of the VIPs who read our newsletter should give the Powers-To-Be at UPMC a call and tell them to clean up their act. After all, UPMC is a hospital and proud community leader and should know something about what litter leads to. UPMC should lead by example.

Beer garden

Remember last month we mentioned the house with the beer garden in the front at 5804 Maryland? Beer cans and an empty quarter keg. A new planting of discarded beer cans and the same keg are still there. There's mess on the sidewalk in front of the house at 5803 Maryland (across the street).

"I Litter" awards

In July, volunteers were busy picking up litter off street caused by discarded advertising flyers from:

"Garbageville" hot spots

Places that have been on the list previously have cleaned up their act. But we can add these places to our list:

We're not in it for the money

One volunteer's "haul" of found money last month netted a dime and nickel. Don't get into litter if you want to make your fortune.

Another found a cellular phone and an ATM card on the same day. Both were returned to their rightful owners. We're an honest bunch.

Ask Mr. Litterman

Q: You mean after five months there's still litter in Shadyside?
A: Yes. And there always will be litter. The best we can hope for is that there's considerably less litter. Older caked-on litter is removed and people will bend and pick up fresh litter. Remember our theme line: People who care have to pick up for people who don't care and litter.

Q: When do you know you're making progress?
A: When you can count the number of litter pieces you pick up on a block.

Recent Litter-ature

A complete list of past Litterature is available in our archives.

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