Green thumbs wanted

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 17, 2010

FERRIDAY — It’s time for round two.

The Louisiana Garden Club Federation’s cleanest city contest is coming up at the end of the month, and the Town of Ferriday will have a town-wide cleanup day Saturday in anticipation of the contest.

Last year, the town placed third in the competition. This year, the Ferriday Garden Club hopes to address some of the finer points that cost it a higher ranking.

“Litter was the main thing last year,” beautification committee chair Lena Bateman said. “For every piece of litter they see, it is 1/10 of a point. They took off for litter, and they took off for litter in the bayou.”

But organizers have said the contest is about more than winning a contest, it’s about taking — and maintaining — pride in the town.

Last year, the garden club passed out buttons that said, “Let’s clean up Ferriday,” and this year they’re handing out those buttons again, pushing the same message.

And to do that, the garden club is asking volunteers to show up at the Ferriday Post Office at 8:30 a.m. Saturday.

“We will have work assignments according to people’s abilities, according to what they can do in the length of time they can work,” Bateman said.

Those who have it are encouraged to bring their own garden equipment.

“Everybody should bring gloves and a garbage bag, because there is a lot of litter to pick up,” Bateman said.

The Ferriday Chamber of Commerce, the Ferriday Rotary Club, the matron’s club, the Community Service Club, volunteers from the Doty Road Church of God and town crews will all be working, even the police and fire departments.

And Bateman said she hopes for one more group to join in.

“Hopefully, lots of citizens,” she said.

The work is already under way, and cleanup participants have been clearing empty lots and ditches, planting flowers downtown and edging sidewalks.

“The police jury came down and had a big machine with an arm, and they cleaned out all of the debris and some of the vegetation in the bayou,” Bateman said.

She also said she hopes to get a few high school students to volunteer to give a facelift to an old hotel on E.E. Wallace Boulevard next week.

The work Saturday will last until approximately noon.

For more information, contact Bateman at 318-757-6332.