Pitch in at this year’s Valley Pride

This year's Valley Pride event, happening on April 23, promotes a clean, beautiful Columbia Valley.

A similar clean-up effort in 2010.

A similar clean-up effort in 2010.

Residents of the Columbia Valley will have the chance to pitch in and help clean up once again at this year’s Valley Pride clean-up event.

Valley Pride is a valley-wide effort by the Service Clubs Alliance (Rotary, Kinsmen, and Lions Clubs) to facilitate the picking up of garbage on lanes, boulevards, along the sides of the road and just about anywhere else to promote a clean, beautiful valley.

This will be the event’s third year and will be happening on April 23. The clean-up is open to anyone and everyone who would like to participate: from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., residents can pitch in by cleaning up in front of their homes; at 10 a.m., anyone interested in a community-wide clean-up effort can meet at Pothole Park in the District of Invermere, where garbage bags, safety vests and cleaning locations will be distributed by event organizers and volunteers.

This event also falls on the same day as Operation Clean Sweep, a Canada-wide clean-up effort event, and one day after Earth Day. Valley Pride will also coincide with the Easter long-weekend this year.

“We’ve never done it on a long weekend,” said Peter Evans, community services director of the Rotary Club of Invermere. “We’re hoping the date can bring out lots of people, though.”

The Valley Pride event is not just on April 23 though; schools throughout the valley will be putting forth their best clean-up efforts during the week as well.

“The community associations are on board with this. We also have Wildsight and other environmental groups involved for this event,” said Evans. “We’re trying to reach out to as many people as we can with this effort.”

“Valley Pride is a great event,” said Milt Deck, one of the original individuals involved in developing the idea of Valley Pride and one of the main organizers of the event. “People and groups throughout the valley get involved in cleaning up our living and recreation areas. It is an opportunity for family groups to participate and carry on the activities fostered by the schools. We hope Valley Pride makes us all stop and think about keeping our beautiful valley free from refuse. We hope that the idea of ‘pitching-in’ will become part of everyone’s daily lives.”

For more information about Valley Pride, contact Peter Evans at 250-342-3070.