Clean-Up Day on Saturday calls for volunteers to help spruce up three town parks
By Josh Davis, Associate Editor
(April 19, 2018) The annual Berlin Clean-Up Day, Saturday, kicks off the weeklong “Take Pride in Berlin Week,” April 21-28.
“The basic idea is for volunteers to come to the parks and help us spruce up, clean up, do some planting and mulching, and put in some new playground surfacing [to prepare for summer],” organizer Mary Bohlen, Berlin’s administrative services director, said. “But we also encourage people to take a look around their own neighborhood and see if they can do some cleanup, help a neighbor with a project, or whatever moves the spirit.”
On Berlin Clean-Up Day, April 21, volunteers can begin signing up at 8:30 a.m. at Dr. William Henry Park, Stephen Decatur Park, or Berlin Falls park. Students can earn service hours by volunteering.
“We have some yard tools available, but we always encourage people to bring their own as well. That way we always have plenty to go around,” Bohlen said.
Volunteers also are needed to help clean up Hudson Branch, an activity Bohlen said would not be suitable for young children. Heavy clothes and boots are recommended for that activity.
“They’re going to have to get down in the ditch and there could be some heavy lifting,” she said. “Signup for that is also at Henry Park,”
Volunteer work is scheduled to finish at 11 a.m., after which SonRise Church will provide free lunch for volunteers at Henry Park.
Residents can show off their Berlin pride by placing a “Take Pride in Berlin Week” yard sign at their home or business. For more information, contact Bohlen at 410-641-4314 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
“This really is a great place to work and visit,” Bohlen said. “[Take Pride in Berlin Week] is an opportunity to do some spring cleaning, and at the same time show your pride in our town.”
Additionally, Economic and Community Development Director Ivy Wells said a Town of Berlin Night was scheduled at Shorebirds stadium on Tuesday, April 24 at 7:05 p.m. Tickets are $8.
“If you haven’t heard, Cal Ripken’s son is now playing for the Shorebirds, so there’s a good possibility that you may get a Cal Ripken sighting that night.”
Proceeds will be donated to Berlin Little League.
The town is also promoting participation in the “Meet Me at the Park” Earth Month campaign to win $20,000.
“That is through the National Parks Association, which we belong to,” Bohlen said. “If you look at some of the cities we’re competing against population-wise, we’re not doing so great, but we can try. That would be a $20,000 grant to use at one or more of our parks.”
Those who make nominations are entered into a sweepstakes to win a GoPro HERO5 prize pack. The town with the most nominations at the end of April will receive the funding.
For more information, visit www.meetmeatthepark.org.
Berlin also is awaiting news of Program Open Space grant funding from both the state and Worcester County.
The Town Council, last month, approved a parks priority list of projects that included funding requests and a total price tag of $303,450, spread out over five projects.
“I should be receiving an indication of whether or not the project is approved [at the state level] really at any time, but then the funding wouldn’t be available until after the state passes their 2019 budget,” Bohlen said.
She added money from the state was very likely, but additional county money was not a certainty.