Jamestown was swarming with yellow volunteer shirts this past Saturday as Hands On Jamestown crews collected garbage, swept sidewalks, and weeded gardens at the annual community clean up event. Nearly 800 volunteers from all over southern Chautauqua County came together to help spruce up downtown, outlying neighborhoods, and gateways into the city.
“We had a huge boost in volunteer numbers over last year,” said Edwin Rodriguez Jr., events and marketing associate for the JRC. “To see all those yellow shirts floating around downtown, you couldn’t help but think of everyone as busy bees,” said Rodriguez. Volunteers signed up on a first come, first served basis to choose their clean up location. If a group did not have a specific location in mind, they could choose to be assigned a location based on need. Volunteers were placed from downtown all the way to the outskirts of the city.
This year’s Hands On Jamestown set a volunteer participation record and got the city ready for summertime events and visitors. The event was made possible by the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation, Gebbie Foundation, M&T Bank, City of Jamestown, Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, and Lynn Development Group.
Donuts, coffee, and water were available at the start of the event with a thank you lunch at noon at Winter Garden Plaza on North Main Street. Food items, clean up tools, and other supplies were graciously provided in part by Jamestown Area Medical Associates, Pepsi, Sam’s Club, Tops Friendly Markets, Valu Home Center, Walmart, Tim Hortons, and Wegmans.
“We cannot thank our volunteers, sponsors, and donors enough for their help with this year’s event. An event like this requires a lot of planning and a lot of funding,” said Rodriguez. Community residents who wish to make a donation to Hands On Jamestown can do so on the JRC’s website. Donations help to buy tools, supplies, refreshments, and t-shirt for volunteers at future clean up events.