Comcast backing community clean-up day

A Pennsylvania business is looking to improve the city through a volunteer effort scheduled for April 27.

Park Manager Terry Shaffer said Comcast will host a community clean-up day at Firestone Park from 9 a.m. to noon. The company will even be providing $200 worth of equipment the city can keep after the event is over.

Comcast employees, their families and other volunteers will work alongside volunteers from Columbiana on general clean-up at the park and cemetery, and for each local volunteer Comcast will donate $17 to $20 to the city’s Restoration, Renovation and Beautification Committee, he said.

Roger Crowell, president of the beautification committee, said the money raised will go toward the purchase of decorative plants or flowers in each bump out along South Main Street.

The nine bump outs were constructed there last year as part of the million-dollar improvement project. The project was a city undertaking, while the additional bump out improvements will be the responsibility of the beautification committee.

Crowell said the committee hopes to add ground cover and low-maintenance plantings to the bump outs this year, but whether that will happen depends on funding.

The entire project was estimated to cost between $6,000 and $7,000, he said.

“Hopefully this (community day) will help us raise the money and we can proceed. Obviously we’d like to have it done now before it gets too warm,” he said.

The committee is a 501c3 non-profit and can accept donations at any time.

Larry Deidrick, of the city’s Tourism Bureau, said he contacted the committee after hearing about the planned community effort.

“We’ve been working on this and have come up with the plants they want to put in and what kind will survive. They have already done some preliminary work on that so when this fund raising thing came up we thought what a perfect way to raise the funds,” he said.

Crowell said a landscaper has advised the committee of which plants would be useful for those areas.

“The hope was to be able to landscape all those and mulch them,” he said.

The committee added brick walls, benches, flowers, name pavers and wall blocks to the downtown area a few years ago, and was also responsible for the beautification of the traffic circle.

“All the improvements that we do are from private funding and contributions. It always helps a lot when we get people that want to help out and contribute to the cause. It certainly made a major improvement in the downtown,” he said.

Shaffer said people interested in volunteering on April 27 should pre-register through the Columbiana Chamber of Commerce.

Volunteers will meet at Pavilion no. 4 in Firestone Park at 9 a.m. that day, and T-shirts and breakfast will be provided by Comcast, Shaffer said.

It is the first time Comcast has offered to host an event of this kind in the city, he added.