A new event is coming to town next month that will encourage residents to roll up their sleeves and clean up areas of the city that could use a little extra attention.
Clean the Ferndale UP is a community clean-up event that will bring volunteers together to clean, repair and improve public spaces or other areas that have been neglected, vandalized or misused within Ferndale.
"This is a town of 'doers' that are just looking for a chance to make our community better," said Ferndale resident Matthew Nowaczok, a foundation board member who is heading up the event. "I wanted to do this event as I love the potential of this town and love that so many people are committed to realizing that potential."
Nowaczok said clean-up work will be done in parts of town that tend to get less attention, with a specific focus on beautifying Hilton, Livernois and Eight Mile.
"This event is important as a clean-up is about us taking ownership of aesthetics of your town," Nowaczok said, adding that he hopes residents might also be inspired to beautify their own front yards or property. "I for one am planning to plant flowers and mulch that day after the event."
The community has embraced the event so far, Nowaczok said. Sponsors include Credit Union One and Allied Printing. "We have had a tremendous response," he said. "I shouldn’t be surprised though as this is a community that loves to volunteer."
Jennifer Roosenberg, executive director of the Ferndale Area Chamber of Commerce, said she's excited about the opportunity and the benefits for the community.
"Clean parks, a clean downtown, fresh flowers - all of that adds to the overall inviting atmosphere and it makes people feel more comfortable when they come into the city or living here," she said.
Roosenberg said the "sweat equity" that volunteers put in will have a great impact.
"It's people rolling up their sleeves and getting involved in making those improvements - you walk away with that sense of pride and wanting to make sure it stays that way," she said. "It also helps people to start to get to know people in the community and kind of work toward that common goal."
Want to get involved?
- Who: Anyone is welcome to get involved in the event, Nowaczok said. Children can also participate but will need to be accompanied by a guardian.
- What: Volunteers will help with refuse pick-up or flower planting.
- When: 9 a.m. to noon on May 12.
- Where: Check-in will begin at 8:30 a.m. at Ferndale City Hall, where volunteers will be given specific locations.
- How to sign up: Fill out the registration form here.
- What else: Clean-up supplies, water and t-shirts will be provided for volunteers. Nowaczok said volunteers can head over to the WAB or Emory afterwards to celebrate the day of activism.