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Citizens Against Litter

April 2013 Newslitter

In this newsletter: Don't be fooled; Our mission; True sign of spring; "Bob Awards" announced; 6th annual report issued; Spring Redd Up April 19-22; North boroughs collecting and connecting; Four tree planting volunteer days; Two North Park litter-cleaning events; Adopt a Redd Up Zone; Report mailbox graffiti; Litter thrown for 30 yard loss; "I Litter" awards; Garbagevilles; Important phone numbers; Is a "Boris litter rap" coming?; The last word

Don't be fooled

Don't be tricked into thinking there isn't litter around these parts. We need everyone's help on April Fools Day and every day.

Our mission

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

True sign of spring

Welcome sight in my block. Last Wednesday, a day after that last snowstorm, the street cleaner motored down Aiken Ave. at Ellsworth mowing down gutter dirt, grime and cigarette butts. Thanks Public Works.

"Bob Awards" announced

Little did she imagine that picking up street litter and cleaning a blighted vacant lot in Schenley Heights with a few neighbors in 2009 would lead to her being called "a true neighborhood treasure and model."

Phyllis Jackson was honored March 21 with one of the Bob Awards as 2012 Volunteer of the Year at the Clean Pittsburgh Commission's 6th annual Meet N' Greet Mixer.

Other Bob Awards went to Polish Hill as Neighborhood of the Year, South Side Slopes as Most Improved Neighborhood and Bloomfield's Cats & Dogs Coffee Shop as the Redd Up Zone Adoption Group of the Year. The late Mayor Bob O'Connor's wife, Judy, and his son, Corey, now a councilman, presented the awards.

The Meet N' Greet Mixer salutes the 150-person steward network in the city's 90 neighborhoods. Personalized Steward Certificates of Appreciation were also presented.

Ms. Jackson, a Clean Pittsburgh Steward, reaches out beyond her Schenley Heights neighborhood and its 40 volunteers and participates as a leader in the greater Hill District Consensus Group and the Clean Green Hill group doing Redd Ups, greening and beautification projects. She attended the Mayor's 10-week Civic Leadership Academy last year.

Nine others were nominated for as top volunteer in 2012: Joe Brown, and John Moore, Brightwood; Hannah Grace and Ann Rose, Squirrel Hill; Pam Grabowski and Eileen Papale, Brookline; Tim Maloney, Brightwood Heights; Carl Suter, Westwood; and Joan Waldschmidt, Fineview.

As the Neighborhood of the Year, Polish Hill was singled out for its year-round Redd Ups, removal of 10 tons of litter from three illegal dumps, special volunteer crews to keep stairs free of litter and snow, creation and maintenance of vegetable and flower gardens and turning two vacant lots into mini parks.

As Most Improved Neighborhood, South Side Slopes volunteers redd up year-round, clean and maintain its world-famous steps, reclaimed South Side Park and created a community garden at Bandi Schaum Field.

Several hundred attended the Mixer. Joining stewards and volunteers were city officials, Public Works supervisors and city council members.

6th annual report report issued

The Clean Pittsburgh Commission released its 2012 Annual Report detailing activities involving litter and illegal dumping prevention and cleanups, blighted vacant lots, demolished and shuttered buildings, abandoned car removal, graffiti removal and recycling and green programs. It's available electronically through the Citizens Against Litter website and the Clean Pittsburgh Commission website. The report was released at the Mixer on March 21.

Download a copy of the report at:

Spring Redd Up April 19-22

Neighborhood, community and group participation is over 200 and still growing for the Spring Earth Day Weekend Redd Up April 19-21 (on or about). Earth Day is Monday, April 22.

Friday will be the day when school kids pick up litter on and around their campuses. Saturday will be the biggest cleanup day. Some communities, like Squirrel Hill, recruit volunteers for Sunday cleanups.

Many communities have their cleanups or plantings in the spring on other dates and their participation is listed. There is still time to be counted and connected. Community leaders and individuals looking for a place to pick up litter are asked to sign up by contacting Boris Weinstein of Citizens Against Litter at 412-688-9120 or

In Pittsburgh: Alcoa "green" volunteers, AmeriCorps, Adult Probation Day Reporting Center, Allegheny CleanWays, Allegheny Commons, Allegheny West, Allentown, Arlington, Banksville, Bedford Dwellings, Beechview, Beltzhoover, Bloomfield, Bon Air, Brighton Heights, Brightwood, Bull Elephants/Masons, California-Kirkbride, Carrick, Central North Side, Chartiers, Citizens Against Litter, Community Technical Assistance Center, Crafton Heights, Crawford-Roberts, Downtown Partnership, Duquesne Heights, East Allegheny, East Carnegie, East Hills, East Liberty, Elliott, Fairywood, Fineview, Friendship, Garfield, Glen Hazel, Greenfield, Hays, Hazelwood , Hill House Consensus Group, Homewood, Knoxville, Jail Trail, Jubilee Christian School (for Banksville Road), Highland Park, Larimer, Lawrenceville, Lincoln Place, Lower Hill, Manchester, Mexican War Streets, Middle Hill, Morningside, Mount Oliver, Mount Washington, New Homestead, North Point Breeze, Oakland, Oakwood, Observatory Hill, Overbrook, Paddle Without Pollution, PA. Resources Council, Perry Hilltop, Pitt Football Team, Pittsburgh Job Corps, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy (Schenley, Riverview, Frick, Highland), Pittsburgh Public Schools, Polish Hill, Pressley Ridge School for the Deaf, Renew Pittsburgh, Ridgemont, Schenley Heights, ServePgh, Shadyside, Sheraden, South Side Graffiti Watch, South Side Flats, St. Clair, South Side Slopes, Spring Garden-Deutschtown, Squirrel Hill, South Point Breeze, Spring Hill, Stanton Heights, Strip District, Summer Hill, Swisshelm Park, The Academy System, Troy Hill, Uptown, West End Village, Westwood and Windgap.

Redd Up Zone participants: South Pittsburgh Development Corp., North Point Breeze, Jucunta St. (400 Block) and Cats & Dogs Coffee Shop.

In Allegheny County: Aspinwall, Avalon, Bellevue, Ben Avon, Ben Avon Heights, Brentwood, Carnegie, Chalfant, Collier, Deer Creek/Emerling Park (Indiana), Dormont, Dravosburg, East McKeesport, Edgewood, Emsworth, Etna, Findley, Forest Hills, Fox Chapel, Hampton, Harmar, Heidelberg, Leetsdale, Lincoln, Kilbuck, Marshall, McKees Rocks, Monroeville, Mount Oliver, Natrona Comes Together Assn. (for Natrona), Ohio, PA. Dept. of Environmental Protection, Penn Hills, Pine, Pitcairn, Pleasant Hills, Port Vue, North Park Friends, North Suburban Chamber of Commerce, North Versailles, Rosslyn Farms, Scott, Shady Side Academy, Shaler, South Fayette, Friends of South Park, South Park Twp., Stowe, Tri-County Trout Club, Verona, West Homestead, Wilkins and Wilkinsburg.

In Beaver County: Ambridge, Beaver, Big Beaver, Chippewa, Center (Aliquippa), Monaca, Patterson, Potter and South Beaver.

In Washington County: Cross Creek, North Strabane, Mingo Creek Park, Cross Creek Park, Washington City and West Pike.

In Westmoreland County: Greensburg, Jeannette, Keystone State Park, Latrobe, Ligonier, Sewickley, Smithton, Unity and Youngwood.

In Butler County: Allegheny Aquatic Alliance, Center, Connoquenessing Creek (Penn), Butler City, Butler Twp, Middlesex and Penn.

North boroughs collecting and connecting

The North Suburban Chamber of Commerce has organized a significant cleanup in the north boroughs. This will be its eighth spring effort to coincide with the area-wide April 20 Redd Up. The communities involved are Avalon, Bellevue, Ben Avon, Ben Avon Heights, Emsworth, Kilbuck and Ohio. This is a wonderful example of connecting communities through collecting litter.

Four tree planting volunteer days

Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy will plant 600 trees in April at four Pittsburgh Parks: Schenley on April 7, Riverview on April 13, Frick on April 20 and Highland on April 27. To volunteer call 412-682-7275, Ext, 232 or e-mail

Two North Park litter-cleaning events

Friends of North Park need volunteers for events in April and May. For the Redd Up on Saturday, April 20 volunteers will meet 9 a.m. at the Cabin on Ingomar Rd. near the intersection of Babcock Blvd. and Wildwood Rd. For the Lake & Land Clean Up on Saturday, May 4 (noon) the meeting place will be Red Barn on Pearce Mill Rd. across from the Boathouse. Get volunteer information from Gary Rigdon at 724-544-7284 or e-mail and Robert Habegger at 412-401-5837 or e-mail

Art contest attracts 1,000

From Dan Kaczmarski of Brookline:

"Currently, over 1,000 students in four schools in the Brookline area are creating anti-litter artwork in conjunction with an art contest sponsored by South Pittsburgh Development Corporation.  Every piece of artwork will be displayed for a day and about 40 pieces will be selected for awards and displayed on Brookline Blvd. The awards event will be Saturday, April 27 at the Brookline Recreation Center. Because all of the art will be displayed there, we are estimating maybe 500 students and their family members will attend sometime during the day."

(Note: this is a project other neighborhoods could copy.)

Adopt a Redd Up Zone

Looking for a worthwhile neighborhood project? Businesses, corporations and groups are invited to adopt their own Pittsburgh street or zone and agree to pick up litter at least four times a year for two years. There are more than 70 adopted zones in this city program. Visit for information and application form.

Report mailbox graffiti

Pittsburgh Postmaster Joseph Meimann urges citizens to be proactive and call the Postal Service directly at 412-359-7845 to report mailbox tagging or boxes in need of repair. Help the postal service by giving them specific information of locations and crossing streets.

Litter thrown for 30 yard loss

The Pitt football team (three busloads) joined community volunteers in six city hilltop neighborhoods to help remove litter and debris on Saturday, March 23. Paul Chryst's team met at the Warrington Rec Center, divided into groups and picked up all kinds of stuff in Allentown, Beltzhoover, Knoxville, Mount Oliver and South Side Slopes. The event was coordinated through the Mayor's Office and the Hilltop Alliance. Public Works Division 4 Supervisor John Radcliffe reported on the haul: 2 to 3 tons of bagged litter, 4 truckloads of wood and other building materials, junk and 55 tires. John estimated it amounts to "about 30 yards of debris" in football or any language. Sounds like a Hall of Fame effort to Mr. Litterman.

"I Litter" awards

Advertising and promotional materials turn into litter in Shadyside and elsewhere. Businesses and sometimes non-profits are often responsible when they put their business on Shadyside streets. There's less of this going on. March's business litterers are: Post-Gazette Sunday Extra, Steel Cactus Restaurant, and Vocelli Pizza.


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.

Is a "Boris litter rap" coming?

Janet Gunter, Clean Pittsburgh Steward, checks in:

"Boris!  How the heck are you? Litter flees at the mere mention of your name! I'll suggest to my team we may need a "Boris Rap" to aid in our efforts this year! Please include Perry Hilltop in the Spring Cleanup. We have new recruits in our volunteer Destroy All Litter campaign on April 20."  

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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