Williams Lea and the City of Wheeling are partnering for the second annual Make Wheeling Shine to be held on Saturday, April 6. The community clean up event will begin at 9 a.m. at the Wheeling Skate Park and will focus on areas along Wheeling Creek and Heritage Trail.
Make Wheeling Shine is part of the broader Make It Shine program organized through the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection. Groups throughout West Virginia can apply to receive grant funding for supplies to complete clean-up activities in their communities. The grant will provide Make Wheeling Shine with gloves, bags, dump trucks and landfill fees for the event.
“Environmental accountability is one of our three main social responsibility initiatives across the country through our Beyond Business program,” said Jennifer Materkoski, senior manager of communications and engagement for Williams Lea. “We take particular pride in this event because we love being a part of the Wheeling community. It means a lot to us to be able to help keep it a beautiful place.”
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While many of the volunteers for the event will be Williams Lea employees, the event is open to anyone wanting to participate. Participants with kayaks and canoes are encouraged to bring them for cleanup in the creek water.
“Our inaugural event in 2018 was a success and I hope this is something we can build upon. We had 53 volunteers and hauled away more than two and a half dump truck loads of litter from Wheeling Creek. Water follows the path of least resistance and unfortunately litter does as well,” said Jesse Mestrovic, director of parks and recreation for the City of Wheeling. “We are thankful for this continued partnership with Williams Lea and the community volunteerism associated helping us improve the wild and wonderful aspects of Wheeling.”
Last year, the statewide program had 4,800 volunteers participate in the Make It Shine program throughout West Virginia collecting more than 240 thousand pounds of litter and debris.