The was bustling Tuesday night as 140 volunteers and supporters of gathered to be recognized and to celebrate the organization’s accomplishments in 2011.
The annual event also served as the local kick-off for the Great American Cleanup, part of the nation’s largest cleanup and beautification effort through Keep America Beautiful. Attendees were treated to a delicious dinner from , followed by Kenny’s Key Lime pie. The Jonquil Garden Club created beautiful flower arrangements for the event. Retiring Chairman Joe Lukas welcomed everyone and took a moment to thank them and encourage the community to continue to support the mission of KSB: “to bring together the resources of government, businesses and citizens to protect and improve the environment and quality of life in our community.”
Mayor Pro-Tem Melleny Pritchett thanked volunteers and staff for their time and efforts on behalf of the City, noting that 2,061 volunteers had given 6,833 hours last year, not including another 6,929 hours of court–ordered time that Keep Smyrna Beautiful directs to keep the City looking good. Past and present City Council Members accepted a mock check for $357,901.00, the value of the time, services and donations given to the City through Keep Smyrna Beautiful last year.
IBM employee and was the featured speaker, and chronicled the history of the seven-year partnership of volunteering for the Smyrna community through Keep Smyrna Beautiful. Because of the success of that partnership, the local Highlands office of IBM was selected to lead the entire Metro IBM organization in their , and IBM was selected as KSB’s Corporate Partner of the Year. The 400 IBM volunteers worked that day in many area schools and parks and did a massive cleanup on I-285 and South Cobb Drive. They have been conducting a yearly volunteer effort with KSB since 2005, planting trees, clearing trails, and painting and landscaping schools and parks.
37 Adopt-a-Mile groups were recognized, many involved for over 20 years. Recycling Awards recognized 6 individuals and businesses for their contributions to the success of recycling in our community. Several businesses and individuals were recognized with the Jonquil Gold Rush Award for their part in selling 25,000 jonquil bulbs this year, with the total sales of jonquils over the 1,100,000 mark in the last 25 years.
Helping Hands Awards were given to thank businesses, groups and individuals who gave significant time, goods or services to support Keep Smyrna Beautiful Programs. This included Keep Cobb Beautiful, Keep Marietta Beautiful, The Jonquil Garden Club, Kenny’s Great Pies, IBM, Advanced Disposal, Inc., Paul Korn, the Smyrna City Marshals, ATT Telecom Pioneers, Williams Park Neighborhood, Forest Hills Preservation Group, First Baptist Church of Smyrna, KONE Elevator, Crystal Springs Water, John Hite, Atkins Park Tavern, and the C-5 Foundation. Smyrna-Vinings Patch, The Bright Side newspapers and Clear Channel Outdoors received The Media Award.
Keep Smyrna Beautiful Board members were introduced and two retiring board members with six years of service, Joe Lukas and Shebra Thompson, were presented with glass jonquils from Lillie Glass.
Founded in 1984, Keep Smyrna Beautiful is a department of the City of Smyrna with an appointed and elected Board which also operates Keep Smyrna Beautiful, Inc. a non-profit affiliate of Keep America Beautiful.
-Courtesy of Ann Kirk, Keep Smyrna Beautiful director.