Group to work on downtown entrance

Published 2:09 pm Saturday, March 31, 2007

A Natchez group wants to help make the main entrance to downtown more welcoming.

The Mayor’s Beautification Committee planned out their strategy for improving the look of St. Catherine Street at Friday’s meeting.

“We’ll start by the Forks of the Road, where D’Evereux Drive turns into St. Catherine Street,” Chairwoman Stephanie Hutchins said.

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Along with the Mayor’s Youth Council, they will pick up litter and edge, mow, clean and plant their way toward downtown.

Involving the youth council was something Hutchins said she felt was important.

“They will be able to drive down that street and say, ‘I helped do that,’” Hutchins said.

The committee is asking for monetary donations and volunteers. But because it’s on a heavily traveled street, it will be more of a grown-up project than some others.

“This isn’t going to be a little children’s project,” Hutchins said. “It’s going to be on the street.”

Committee members said they hoped to make downtown’s main entry, a continuation of U.S. 61 into town, more attractive to visitors and residents alike.

The project is designed to coincide with the nation-wide Great American Clean-Up, a Keep America Beautiful program, Hutchins said.

“We always do one big thing in the spring, and there will be another project this fall, too,” she said.

The committee has not decided on a fall project yet, but it will most likely benefit an area outside the downtown grid because “we need to expand,” she said.

The clean-up will take place from 8 a.m. to noon April 28.

Those interested in volunteering or donating money to the St. Catherine Street clean-up project should call Hutchins at 601-442-3706.

And if St. Catherine Street has enough hands working, volunteers can branch out and clean up surrounding streets, she said.

“We will have gloves and bags available,” she said.

“They can take a block to either side, too.”