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On Saturday, October 25th the OKC Beautiful Teen Board held their fall Service Project made possible by a Lowe's/KAB Community Improvement Grant. The goal of the project was to revitalize the school grounds of Britton Elementary school. The school is located on the Northwest side of Oklahoma City in a low-income, minority populated area. The school itself suffers from lack of funding and consequently received an “F” Student Performance Grade rating in 2013 based on their Standardized Test results. 100% of the students that attend this school are on the Federal Free/Reduced Lunch Program. Many of the students live in apartment complexes and the only green spaces they regularly interact with are the school grounds. Revitalizing the school grounds not only benefits the students, but impacts the surrounding community who then can be inspired to clean up their own yards. By providing a clean, beautiful and inviting space to the students we are showing them that their community cares about them. The day of the project the teens cleared away dead plants and trees. They trimmed up existing shrubs and planted new, more sustainable plants such as Crape Myrtles, Vitex and Hollys. The teens also painted playground benches, picnic tables and playground equipment. Volunteers from the Britton PTA and students from the University of Oklahoma joined the teens in the clean-up effort. By the end of the day the school grounds were looking so much better! It is amazing how a little effort can make such a big difference.

OKC Beautiful

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On Saturday Sept. 27, as 15,000 runners were running through the streets of Akron -- and even more spectators were lining the streets watching -- Keep Akron Beautiful was assisting the Akron Marathon with its recycling efforts! Early in the morning, a crew of 15 made sure that the trash cans only had trash in them, and that the recycling bins were highly utilized. This group was sorting everything that people were throwing in the trash, pulling out water bottles, cans, and making sure the clothing was donated, not thrown away! Only 10 bags of trash were collected at the start line, and two large blue recycling totes were FULL of recyclables. On the concourse and at the finish line of the race, our Green Team was collecting heat sheets and grocery bags, chip bags to be recycled, PowerBar wrappers to be recycled, bottles and cans, and banana peels to be composted. The Akron Marathon, Keep Akron Beautiful and ReWorks rallied together to make recycling and composting a breeze for all runners involved in the festivities. Thanks to a grant from Keep America Beautiful and The Coca-Cola Foundation, this is the second year we were able to utilize the 25 recycling bins designed specifically for placement at the race. These bins were placed on the concourse of Canal Park on Sept. 27. A special thanks goes out to the “Green Team,” who worked together to make sure the recyclables and trash were in their proper places. From the start line to the finish line and everywhere in between, the volunteers did an amazing job! Congratulations Akron (AND ALL RUNNERS!) on another successful Akron Marathon! The results? Twenty-five full bags of heat sheets were taken to the Blankets to Boards program; 3.41 tons of recyclables; and 630 lbs of clothing were donated to the Salvation Army. We are still waiting on numbers for our composting. It was a very successful recycling day at the Akron Marathon. We are proud to work with such great partners to make this happen in Akron!

Keep Akron Beautiful, Akron, OH

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