Volunteers clean up Halloween block party goers’ mess despite rain
By Mayuri Mei Lin, CG News
While many Ohio University students were putting away costumes or nursing a hangover, 25 volunteers were hard at work cleaning up the aftermath of the Athens Halloween Block Party on Court Street early Sunday morning.
“Court Street and the surrounding area received a significant amount of trash and debris from the black party,” said Thomas Raabe, a community assistant for OU’s Off Campus Living and coordinator of the clean-up initiative.
The 25 volunteers consisted of city officials, Neighborhood Association members, OU resident assistants and students.
“It was definitely a combined effort between the city, community and university,” Raabe said.
Wesley Grunden, also a community assistant and coordinator of the project said, “We were very pleased with this turnout given the fact that the weather was not on our side. Had it not been for the cold and the rain, I suspect we would have had possibly 10 to 15 more volunteers.”
In regards to trash management, Raabe said that the volunteers made a point to separate the trash collected between recyclable materials and disposable materials. 50 bags of trash were collected and some of the trash was recycled.
“We did have our groups separate bottles and cans for recycling,” Grunden said. “(However), given the fact that it had been raining, little else could be saved for recycling.”
No funds were allocated by the university for the project and the clean-up supplies were provided by the city and Off Campus Living. Goodfella’s Pizza also provided volunteers with free pizza afterwards.
“By pulling out resources, we were able to do this project without actually spending money,” Grunden said.
In response to next year’s Halloween clean-up, Raabe said that other community assistants will need to step up and coordinate the initiative because it is not something he plans to lead next year.