Hundreds turn out for cleanup events in Harrison, Vandergrift |
Valley News Dispatch

Hundreds turn out for cleanup events in Harrison, Vandergrift

Mary Ann Thomas
Tom Davidson | Tribune-Review
Workers from Environmental Coordination Services and Recycling of Cochranton, process items collected during a "Too Toxic to Trash" event held Saturday, April 27, 2019 in Harrison.
Tom Davidson | Tribune-Review
Workers from Environmental Coordination Services and Recycling of Cochranton, process items collected during a "Too Toxic to Trash" event held Saturday, April 27, 2019 in Harrison.
Tom Davidson | Tribune-Review
Workers from Environmental Coordination Services and Recycling of Cochranton process items collected during a “Too Toxic to Trash” event held Saturday in Harrison.
Mary Ann Thomas | Tribune-Review
David Golding, owner of the Pride Wrestling Club in Vandergrift, helps clean up at Vandergrift pool.
Mary Ann Thomas | Tribune-Review
Luke Lacaria of Vandergrift blows away leaves and debris at Vandergrift pool for Earth Day events on Saturday.
Mike Werries | For the Tribune-Review
A neighborhood cleanup also took place Saturday in the Natrona neighborhood of Harrison. Volunteers were out cleaning the streets, alleys and sidewalks. Jim Rzeczkowski is shown pulling weeds from the flower garden at the base of the Natrona Playground’s flag pole.

‘Tis the season to redd up, as we say in these parts, and an event Saturday in Harrison gave people in the region the chance to get rid of hard-to-dispose items like televisions, paint and household chemicals.

It was a “Too Toxic To Trash” collection at the township building where these items, which aren’t legally accepted during regular trash pickups, were accepted for a fee.

“We collect a lot,” said Todd Andrews, hazardous waste manager for Environmental Coordination Services and Recycling, the Cochranton-based company that collects and disposes of the products. “We go all over Pennsylvania.”

A typical participant disposes of about 100 pounds of items at these events, Andrews said.

The company charges per pound for the items it collects and the rates vary — from 60 cents per pound for televisions and computer monitors, $1.25 per pound for paint and $2 per pound for household hazardous waste.

Propane tanks are taken for $8 each.

Joe Sporcic, 70, of Harrison dropped off a little bit of everything.

“I’ve got an old TV, 10 or 12 gallons of paint and an old propane tank,” Sporcic said. “You can’t put them in the trash.”

The event provided a good chance for Sporcic to clean out the basement.

“It’s a great place to get rid of things,” said Gary Powell, 60, of Fawn.

Powell was unloading a small television, one of the more common items that are collected, according to Andrews.

A line of cars and trucks filled Municipal Drive awaiting the collection, which is the first of two in Harrison this year.

“Forty years’ worth of paint, I’m finally getting rid of it,” said Dave Mulhern, 71, of Tarentum.

“I’m very happy someone’s providing an event to recycle,” Glenn Hellman, 63, of Freeport said. “It’s something important: when everybody’s environmentally conscious to have these recycling opportunities.”

Vandergrift pool cleanup

The sun shone, pickups arrived and a bevy of more than 100 volunteers showed up for Vandergrift’s community cleanup Saturday.

Volunteers fanned out throughout the borough but focused on the Franklin Avenue park and playground, the Vandergrift Park and Pool, several parklets, Kennedy Park and the basketball courts.

“It was absolutely incredible — we had multiple generations, from the youngest Girl Scout troops to grandparents,” said Marilee Kessler, who coordinated the cleanup with a number of organizations including borough police, council, the Vandergrift Improvement Program group, Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops and others.

For the second year, the Kiski Area High School marching band had a strong showing, too.

One of the major tasks on hand was removing overgrown brush, debris, leaves and peeling paint — really five months of winter weather — at the Vandergrift pool.

“It’s a great start to the year,” said Daisha Clayton, pool manager. “It takes a village to get this park ready for the year.”

And she had one, since 50 volunteers showed up at the pool alone.

Luke Lacaria, 17, of Vandergrift blew away leaves and other debris around the pool.

“It’s important to help your community and support them where they need it,” he said.

David Golding, owner of the Pride Wrestling Club, which is headquartered in the borough, brought about 20 volunteers to the pool Saturday.

“We love Vandergrift,” he said. “We are all coming to help to the community — on and off the mat.”

Lunch and refreshments were provided by Ianni’s pizza and the The Center on Franklin Avenue.

Mary Ann Thomas and Tom Davidson are Tribune-Review staff writers. You can contact Mary Ann at 724-226-4691, [email protected] or via Twitter @MaThomas_Trib. You can contact Tom at 724-487-7208, [email protected] or via Twitter @TribDavidson.

Mary Ann Thomas is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Mary at 724-226-4691, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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