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Citizens Against Litter

August 2011 Newslitter

In this newsletter: Our mission; Clean Pittsburgh Commission website; Go fight city hall; Forget the superhero; summon the grannies; Fall Redd Up October 21-23; Pitt Make a Difference Day; "The worst"; White Oak adopt-a-block; Greenfield glitter; Banksville Blitz group disbands; Helping neighborhoods; No "I Litter" awards; Garbagevilles; Important phone numbers; Next to last word; The last word

Our mission

Our mission is to inspire people throughout the city and region to collect litter and connect neighborhoods.

Clean Pittsburgh Commission website

Check it out. Visit It opened for business, so to speak, a couple weeks ago. The Clean Pittsburgh Commission has some information on it now. It will be an on-going project to add a lot more information that will be helpful to citizens of the city, Allegheny County and beyond, regarding such things as dates of our fall and spring Redd Ups, twice a year open CPC meetings, the annual Meet & Greet event, "Bob" awards, etc. Contact person for the site is

Go fight city hall

Pittsburgh City Council is taking action to remove its own recently enacted ordinance restricting leafleting (to curb littering). Apparently what seems like littering to one person is an attack on free speech (first amendment) to another.

Forget the superhero; summon the grannies

(The following Letter to the Editor appeared in the Post-Gazette July 13. The writer is 100% correct.)

Regarding "Downtown Cleanup Calls for a Superhero, With Your Assistance" (July 5 Walkabout column by Diana Nelson Jones): Are they kidding? Steroid-puffed Redd Uppington? To keep Pittsburghers in line?

Enough with super men heroes. What Pittsburgh needs to keep us slobs and miscreants on the straight and narrow are a couple of grandmas who don't take guff from anybody. Grandma No. 1 is African-American. Grandma No. 2 is of Irish or Polish or Italian descent. They are Nonna or Babcia or YaYa or Meemaw or Granny, and the two of them together are a force of nature.

You know them. Four-foot-nothing, sinewy arms, hands stronger than Billy Conn's, unlimited energy, possessors of the look that can puncture a balloon or an ego. These are not helpless old ladies. These are strong Pittsburgh women with grandkids who keep them up to date on the latest electronics and who cook enough food for their families and their neighbors and anyone else who happens to walk through the door. These are our superhero dirt busters.

They are not cartoon characters. We will see them but in shadow or from the back or side and only in motion, always in motion. We don't see their faces because theirs are the faces of all our grandmothers. If they can't make us feel guilty about defacing or dirtifying our city, nobody can.

So, litterers and taggers, you get on back to that building you tagged or that pile of trash you left behind and don't you come home until it's all redd up, or these grandmas will find you and they will kick your behind!

Leah Pileggi

Fall Redd Up October 21-23

A reminder. Please block out these dates for the Redd Up this fall: October 21, 22 and 23. Friday will be for school kids and the Stash the Trash cleanup program around their schools. Saturday, October 22 will be the big Redd Up day and coincides with "Pitt Make a Difference Day". Leaders: it's not too early to begin lining up your volunteers. Contact or call 412-688-9120.

Pitt Make a Difference Day

For the fourth year Pitt student volunteers will work alongside neighborhood volunteers in Pittsburgh and Allegheny County this fall. This year's goal on Saturday, October 22 is placement of 2,800 Pitt students. Partnering with Pitt and Citizens Against Litter will be 65 neighborhoods/communities: Allentown, Arlington, Beechview, Brighton Heights, Brightwood, Beltzhoover, Bloomfield, Bon Air, Brookline, California-Kirkbride, Carrick, Crafton Heights, Ridgemont, Westwood, East Liberty, Elliott, Esplen, Fineview, Eliza Furnace Trail (Friends of the Riverfront), Friendship, Garfield, Hays, Lincoln Place, New Homestead, Hazelwood, Homewood, Larimer, Lawrenceville, Knoxville, Manchester, Mexican War Streets, Central Northside, Middle Hill District, Morningside, Mount Oliver (city and county), Mount Washington, Oakland, South Oakland, Perry Hilltop, Polish Hill, Schenley Heights, Shadyside, Sheraden, South Oakland, South Side Flats, South Side Slopes, Spring Garden-East Deutschtown, Stanton Heights, Strip District, Summer Hill, Troy Hill, West End, Aspinwall, Brentwood, Dormont, Homestead, McKees Rocks, Sharpsburg, Penn Hills, Stowe, West Homestead and Wilkinsburg.

"The worst"

It's been an absolute mess for as long as Mr. Litterman's been picking up litter in Shadyside. We're talking about S. Graham St. between Center Ave. and Baum Blvd. Wendy's customers contribute to the mess. The Blockbuster store property was a mess even before it was closed. It's even worse now. Mr. Litterman calls it the biggest dump (outside a real dump) in Shadyside. Wendy's store management couldn't care less. A second restaurant, auto repair station, residents and church on that small stretch aren't doing anything about the trash either. Mr. Litterman "got mad" and did something about it a couple weeks ago. Can some of these other guys get mad too?

White Oak adopt-a-block

Don Kudas reports that the White Oak Council endorsed an "Adopt a Block" clean up program for the borough in May. The program can be viewed on the White Oak website. Citizens of White Oak are asked to adopt a block to keep streets clean by signing an agreement and release form. Volunteers would be expected to clean their areas at least quarterly. More response is needed. Notices have appeared in the local newspaper. Contact

Greenfield glitter

Pat Hassett:

With everyone reporting, we had a bumper crop of collected litter in June -- 49 bags (34.5 white and 15.5 blue). Highest number since our program started several years ago. Top pickers were Mimi (12 bags), Kate (11 bags) and Adam and Jarred (5 bags each).

Banksville Blitz group disbands

An article in the Pittsburgh Trib on July 21 reads, "Discouraged by a lack of support, interest and funds the Blitz on Banksville group, which initiated garden projects, litter clean-ups and sculpture installations to improve the look of Banksville Rd., is disbanding." It's sad to see them go. These volunteers made a difference for ten years.

Helping neighborhoods

Four groups (among others that were out there) took on important cleanup projects in June and July. There were the 350 volunteers from Deloitte on its annual Impact Day tackling about a dozen different projects in Sheraden and Esplen with partner Renew Pittsburgh; employees of Rivers Casino cleaned up the North Shore Trail prior to the Three Rivers Regatta; and volunteers of Shalom Pittsburgh with partner Renew Pittsburgh focused their attention on Lewis Playground in Homewood. Hundreds of attendees of the national Mennonite conference in Pittsburgh July 4-8 participated in community projects in many places including Larimer, Morningside and Wilkinsburg.

No "I Litter" awards

Advertising materials turn into litter in Shadyside and elsewhere. Businesses and sometimes non-profits are often responsible when they put their business on Shadyside streets. Good news. There are no awards for July.


Garbagevilles are houses, buildings, streets and places that are a mess. Some because of litter; some because of unswept leaves; some because of trash and junk on their property. Some because garbage cans sit in the front of their houses. Many because of the absence of lids on garbage cans and open waste containers. Some of these Shadyside Garbagevilles are always a mess. This is an incomplete list of course.

Important phone numbers

Need to contact the city about something that's been bothering you, like potholes and graffiti? Call the 311 Response line (alternate number is 412-255-2621). Your request will be logged and sent to the proper department. Want to contact someone directly? The following list may help.

Next to last word

"Tell me and I'll forget. Show me and I may not remember. Involve me and I'll understand."

Native American proverb

The last word

Remember. Rome wasn't redd up in a day either.

Recent Litter-ature

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

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