Northern Michigan fall highway cleanup starts Saturday

Volunteers will soon be scouring the roadsides looking for trash during the year’s final Adopt-A-Highway pickup. Thousands of volunteers in the popular Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) program will be picking up litter along highway roadsides from Saturday, Sept. 23, through Sunday, Oct. 1.

“As the fall pickup approaches, we’d like to thank Adopt-A-Highway groups for their hard work and community spirit again this year,” said State Transportation Director Kirk T. Steudle.

There are three scheduled Adopt-A-Highway pickups each year: one each in the spring, summer and fall. Volunteers in Michigan have been participating in the program since 1990. Every year, Adopt-A-Highway volunteers collect more than 60,000 bags of trash. The popular program has grown to involve more than 2,800 groups cleaning 6,400 miles of highway.

Motorists should be on the lookout beginning Saturday for volunteers wearing high-visibility, yellow-green safety vests. MDOT provides free vests and trash bags, and arranges to haul away the trash.

Volunteers include members of civic groups, businesses and families. Crew members have to be at least 12 years old and each group must number at least three people.

Sections of highway are still available for adoption. Interested groups should check the MDOT Adopt-A-Highway website at www.michigan.gov/adoptahighway for more information and the name of their county’s coordinator, who can specify available roadsides.

Groups are asked to adopt a section of highway for at least two years; there is no fee to participate.

Adopt-A-Highway volunteer groups are recognized with signs bearing a group’s name posted along stretches of adopted highway.

Adopt-A-Highway is a Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) program designed to help keep the state’s highway roadsides clean and attractive. Our congregation at The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Petoskey has adopted a two mile section of M119 just south of Cross Village. We do three trash pickups a year and usually include a social event of lunch or dinner following each pickup. Since our section is so close to Cross Village, we use the Legs Inn parking lot as a meeting place to get organized for our pickups. Please consider helping us with the trash pickups. It’s great exercise along a beautiful stretch of road and we would enjoy your company as we help keep our roads clean. Please join us for the meal following the pickup even if you are unable to help with the pickup.

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