The secretaries of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Department of Transportation (PennDOT) joined City of Chester officials, residents, and Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful at Sun Village Park for beautification activities to celebrate the community’s Earth Day cleanup of the park and the positive impact of state partnership and investment.
The community has worked for two years on an ongoing project to remove trash, tires, and graffiti; paint murals; plant flowers; and complete other projects to clean and beautify the four-acre park. The project has received technical support, supplies, and other assistance from Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful through support from DEP, PennDOT, and the Adopt-a-Highway Program.
“Everyone plays a part in keeping Pennsylvania clean. The Chester community’s dedication to cleaning up Sun Village Park, making it a more accessible outdoor natural space, is a model for communities across the commonwealth,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell, “DEP is pleased to support Chester’s great effort and success.”
“While the ultimate solution would be for people to stop littering our roads, I am extremely proud of the work of PennDOT’s Adopt-A-Highway volunteers,” said PennDOT Secretary Richards. “We’ve taken steps to make it easier for them to beautify our roadways by developing an online portal to take care of registration and material ordering needs – saving time and eliminating paperwork.”
Today’s event kicked off a weekend cleanup project at Sun Village Park as part of the statewide Great American Cleanup of Pennsylvania, going on through May 31. Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful coordinates the campaign with support from DEP, PennDOT, the Pennsylvania Waste Industries Association, and other partners. Last year the campaign brought over 132,000 Pennsylvanians together to collect more than 5 million pounds of trash and plant trees, shrubs, and flowers.
Secretaries McDonnell and Richards joined Mayor Thaddeus Kirkland, Councilwoman Portia West, Reverend Horace Strand, community cleanup organizer Bonita Taylor, and other community leaders and residents, along with Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful President Shannon Reiter, in planting additions to a butterfly garden and painting park benches and murals.
Taylor led participants in a walking tour that showcased the community’s progress in transforming the park.
View a video of the Sun Village Park Earth Day celebration here.
(Photo, left to right) Volunteer Melody Muhammad; DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell; PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards, community cleanup organizer Bonita Taylor; KPB President Shannon Reiter; and John Scott, Executive Director, Keep Chester Beautiful, at Sun Village Park, Chester.