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Community Members Clean Up Sanford for Earth Day

man picking up trash earth day


Lawrence Furbish works in a sweet fern planting. 

Photo: Bridget Salantri     

By Bridget Salantri and Zendelle Bouchard

Great weather and great community spirit came together on Earth Day weekend, April 20-21, as volunteers pitched in all over town to show Sanford and Springvale some love and help the environment at the same time.

Roundabout: It took only two dedicated volunteers to clean up the south Sanford roundabout at the intersection of routes 4 and 109 early on Saturday morning. Lawrence Furbish of the Sanford Rotary Club and Bridget Salantri of Sanford were safely crossed into the roundabout by Sanford Police Detective Kyle Cutler to begin cleaning up. In just one hour, they collected four bags of trash, including plastic cups, bottles, papers, and cigarette butts from this one-fifth of an acre site.

The plantings at the roundabout were done by the Rotary Club in 2017 from a design by Salmon Falls Nursery that incorporated many native Maine plants. In spite of the site’s maintenance issues and environmental challenges, the native plantings like sweet fern, low bush blueberries, and little bluestem grass are thriving and welcoming people to Sanford. And now they won’t have to share the space with all that trash.

volunteers cleaned the rail trail

Volunteers organized by Fast & Happy Bicycles take a break from their cleanup of the Rail Trail. From left to right: Jim Driscoll, Andrea Couture (on ground), Jim McDonald, Kristen Cyr (standing), Michael Kleinrock, Cory Adams.

Trails: A cleanup of the trails organized by Fast & Happy Bicycles took place on Saturday and Sunday. Volunteers collectively donated more than 50 hours to remove trash, blowdowns and brush from the Rail Trail, which connects Main Street with a route through the woods to Lebanon. There’s still more to be done on the trails, so if you are interested in doing some clean up, reach out to and they will set you up with a project.

Trail volunteers who took part on Earth Day weekend were Bethany LaBelle, Andrea Couture, Rebecca Ames, Michael Kleinrock, Jack McNelly Kleinrock, Maura Herlihy, Jim Driscoll, Cory Adams, Rob Gauthier, Chase Gauthier, Bill Frank, Mary Frances Frank, Eliza Cyr, Chris Eckelman, Andy Orazio, Sam Parady, Elizabeth Laine, Kristen Cyr, Jim McDonald, Diane Driscoll and Shirley Landry.

Sanford first responders and city employees

Sanford first responders and city employees were among the many volunteers who took part in Great Bay Services’ Earth Day Cleanup event.

Downtown: Great Bay Services’ second annual Earth Day Cleanup, sponsored by Northland Enterprises, was a huge success, with almost 100 participants and community members volunteering to clean up areas near downtown, including Pioneer Avenue and Riverside Street, Soldiers and Sailors Park and Gateway Park. Volunteers from Walmart, Sanford Trails, Sanford police, fire and public works departments, Kennebunk Savings and Woodfords Family Services joined Great Bay staff and clients to give our city a spring cleaning. Tabatha Gagne pitched in by making and donating six dozen cupcakes to ensure everyone was “carbed up” for the job on Monday.

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