The annual P.E.I. Women’s Institute Roadside Cleanup is growing in popularity, and the offer of cash prizes appears to be helping.
“It was more so to thank people, encourage people to participate and thank them,” said Chris Ortenburger, one of the organizers of the Roadside Cleanup.
“Most people have been tickled, it’s a lovely little thank you.”
Ortenburger said the prizes and photos showcase the wide range of Islanders who take part in the annual event — it’s “not just granny in the ditch,” as she likes to say.
“It’s always been more than just Women’s Institute, it’s always been something that has been a community effort,” she said.
Pledge and a photo
In 2013, the Women’s Institute first offered prizes to groups taking part in the Roadside Cleanup, either as an individual or family, business, community organization, and school or class.
Last year, a record number of cleanup teams across P.E.I. vied for the chance to win a cash prize of $100 in each category. They had to take a pledge to participate and submit a photo of their team in action.
Many teams also come up names for their groups such as the Ladner Ditch Pickers, the Canoe Cove Roadies and the Mighty Moore Garbage Machines.
“They are very charming, very creative,” said Ortenburger.
“It’s a nice way of marking that spring is here and we’re doing our part to make this Island as beautiful as it is.”
Ella McCormick is one of three members of the Clinton Cleaners, one of last year’s winners. She and a few neighbours teamed up when they saw the $100 prize.
“Last year was our first year as a group but as individuals we’ve been cleaning the roadsides for at least fifteen years here in Clinton,” said McCormick.
“Clinton is a beautiful community with lots of rolling…