NEW HARTFORD, NY - A group of about 17 New Hartford high school students spent their day off doing a little spring cleaning Saturday.
Members of the Ecology Club, as well as the Students for Justice and Equality Club, joined together to clean up a one-mile stretch of Route 8 between Kellogg Road and the train trestle bridge there.
This area has been adopted by the two clubs through the New York State Department of Transportation's Adopt a Highway program. It gives the students an opportunity to give back to their community and help improve the ecosystem in the area.
And they’re challenging other schools to do the same.
Ecology club President Eleanor Jones says she’s amazed at the amount of trash she and her fellow students have found.
“We have cleaned up so much here in just like 20 minutes. I didn’t realize how much trash there was here”
“We’re finding a lot of Styrofoam and cups,” says Students for Justice and Equality club President Sophia O’Neill.
“There’s a lot of beer cans and other types of stuff. You just have to keep it in your car until you can get home and throw it out properly.”
When all was said and done, these New Hartford students wound up filling forty 50-gallon trash bags with garbage and another dozen 25-gallon bags with returnable cans and bottles that they picked up from alongside route 8.