Community clean-up continues for 38th year


Keeping the roads of Mississippi clean for some residents in the county has become an annual tradition.

The Great American Cleanup which is sponsored by Keep Mississippi Beautiful starts every year on spring break and for the Union Grove/Steele Community this is their 38th year for the Clean up event.

“The Great American Cleanup can be done anytime of the year, but we usually have our event during spring break because the children are out of school, and some parents are off work with there kids, so we in turn get more participation,” resident and Scott County Times columnist Brenda Bobbit said.

Bobbit said that this past Saturday morning the crews started work with the roads that were are assigned, “then each person worked their way back to the church,”

The communities that are the focal point of this particular cleanup are the Steele Community, Jamestown Community, and sometimes the Hillsboro Community.

The roads in these communities consist of Water Tank Road, Douglas Rd, Burkes Rd, Boss Hogg Rd, King Rd, Beulah Rd, Wash Dr, Old Jackson Rd, Burkes Circle, Patrick Dr, Oliver Dr, Hawkins Rd and one adopted section of Hwy 21 between Old Jackson and King Rd.

When everyone makes there way back to the church on Old Jackson Rd at 12:00 they prepare for a luncheon.

Wayne Patrick, this years cook, barbecued chicken, hamburgers, and hot dogs.

“This is not only a good deed but its great for our community and the children that are involved in helping keep our community stay cleaned up,” Patrick said.

In 1978 the Great American Cleanup of the roads in this community started. “During that year Watertank Rd was just a dirt road as well as many of the other roads,” Ruby Warnsley another resident of the Union Grove/Steele Community said. “In 1977 I saw my mother Margret Patrick with a brown paper bag in her hand picking up trash on the road.”

She also said that when trash is cleaned up around ones property it not only helps the value of a home but it will also help with community pride.

“My mother always said that picking up trash on the side of the road is a humbling experience and not everyone will get out and pick up trash, but they don’t mind throwing it out and littering,” Warnsley said. “This cleanup began with a quarter mile of road. In 1978 I told my daughter to go out and help her grandmother clean up.”

She added that neighbors started seeing us  clean up the road so it started a domino effect and others started to do they same.

Warnsley concluded by saying, “Cleaning up is an act that when people see you picking up trash, that they may or may not have thrown out lets them know that you are humble. This in turn shows people that you care about your community. You have got to be humble to get down in a ditch and pick up other peoples trash.”