City looks for volunteers for Blacks Run cleanup day

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — Wednesday marks one month until the annual Blacks Run clean-up in Harrisonburg, and the city is looking for volunteers to help out.

Volunteers will clean up Black's Run as well as streets in Harrisonburg.

Wes Runion, an environmental specialist for Harrisonburg Public Works, said that each year, they have about 500 volunteers and they collect an average of three tons of trash within just two hours.

"I know Saturdays are really important, especially in the springtime when we're getting some nice weather, but it's truly humbling to see that many volunteers come out and show their commitment to the environment," said Runion.

The clean-up is organized thanks to the Zane Showker Endowment to the city through the Community Foundation. The goal of the endowment is to beautify and clean up Blacks Run.

Rebecca Stimson, the stormwater compliance specialist for Harrisonburg, said that not only is it a time to clean up trash in Blacks Run, but also on the roads in Harrisonburg. She said everything that ends up on the street will eventually make its way to stormwater.

"It's our daily lives that are contributing and it's just a good time for the community to come together and clean it up," said Stimson.

In the past, volunteers have found things like tires, mattresses and even a 10-foot-long decorative lamp post.

Harrisonburg Public Works will provide all the supplies that are needed to clean up.

The event starts at 9:00 a.m. at the Ice House and will end at 11:30 a.m. with pizza for all of the volunteers.

There will be different environmental vendors set up at the Ice House for volunteers to check out. The DEQ will have an invertebrate table with a touch tank so people can see what lives in Blacks Run.

Volunteers can sign up online or on the day of the cleanup.