Goshen launches clean-up campaign to beautify town

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 23, 2002

Special to The Messenger

The land of Goshen is looking a lot more heavenly these days thanks to the combined efforts of its city council and concerned citizens.

Determined to make Goshen an even more pleasant place to live and work, dozens of volunteers gathered together for the first in a series of efforts to beautify the community.

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"It’s all part of the overall plan to clean up Goshen and develop a greater sense of pride in the town," says Mayor Michael Sanders.

"We’ve had a real good response and a lot of participation. I’m proud of everyone who showed up here today."

Being a small, rural community Goshen has fallen victim to an onslaught of litterbugs ­ people who throw trash out of their vehicles as they pass through the area. Residents have patiently put up with it over the years hoping the situation would improve itself through a statewide campaign to educate the public. However, trash continues to litter the roadways.

At a town meeting held July 18, the citizens decided it was time to take action.

Homeowners were encouraged to clean up and beautify their individual properties as well as to join in on the effort to keep the streets clean.

Armed with insect repellent, trash bags and rubber gloves, volunteers tromped up and down the streets Goshen picking up roadside trash and debris. Young and old, fit and not so fit joined in the effort.

They canvassed the town’s one square mile of incorporated area in sweltering 90-degree temperatures for nearly three hours. The result was a whopping 40 bags stuffed full of trash.

"Efforts like this help to bring us all together," said David Zoren, Reverend of Goshen Baptist Church, who was among the volunteers.

"It’s like family working together as a family to solve a problem, and you don’t see that very often any more."

Eleven-year-old Julie Sanders and her twin sister, Jamie, didn’t much like the bugs or the heat, or the nasty stuff they picked up and crammed into bags.

But they gladly volunteered to pitch in and help out their town.

"I like helping the community by cleaning up instead of throwing out trash on the streets like other people do," said Julie.

In a show of support, Pike County Sheriff Russell Thomas vowed to help the folks of Goshen in their trash crack down.

He suggested to the citizens,

"Try to find a name somewhere in the trash or get the license plate number of vehicles you see throwing garbage out the window and report it to us."

Assured that the Sheriff’s department would follow through on those calls, residents agreed to be on the lookout and report any and all offenders.

"We want to send a strong message to all who pass through our town," said City Councilman Guy Bruce.

"Do not dump your trash in the land of Goshen!"