THORNTON—Two Taylor County citizens, frustrated with the illegal dumping of garbage, decided to organize an event, in conjunction with Taylor County Project HOP2E, to shed a light on the growing issue.
Sherri and Louis Friend were instrumental in organizing the first-ever Thornton Trash Bash, which was held on Saturday.
Despite the heavy rain and storms that moved through the area, S. Friend said that they felt really good about the turnout of people at the event.
“We were very happy with the community’s turnout for the bash,” shared S. Friend. “Throughout the day, we had probably 50 people who came to see what we were offering.”
During the bash, volunteers took the time to help pick up litter along Route 50, near the old Thornton School, and Tygart Valley Watershed volunteers took part in a creek clean-up.
Vendors were set up selling goods, and Nanny’s Ice Cream was present, offering a cool treat, on the humid summer day.
Guests were able to grab some food, while they visited booths or gathered information about the importance of recycling and properly disposing of trash.
In addition, Taylor County Project HOP2E held a food distribution, for families in need.
“We had a really, really good turnout for the distribution,” shared Bryan Smith. Project HOP2E Director. “We took a lot of food with us to the event, and were able to help out approximately 157 families.”
Sheila Westfall, a Program Assistant with the West Virginia University Extension Taylor County Office, spent the day creating litter bugs with children at the event. The craft was created using recycled items including cardboard boxes and plastic bottles.
Door prizes were offered for both adults and children. Additional tickets were provided to those who presented a non-perishable food item.
“The grand prize winner was Charlie Jenkins,” reported S. Friend. “He won one free year of garbage service from Mountain State Waste.”
The Friends are hoping to make the Trash Bash an annual event. S. Friend said her goal for the event is to make everyone aware of the importance of keeping public areas clean, while building a sense of community.
“Taylor County, just like the entire state, is blessed with natural beauty,” expressed S. Friend. “It is our duty, as citizens, to take pride in our corner of almost heaven. If we all work together, we can make a big difference.”