It’s My Park Day brings crowds to clean up

June 8, 2012 Editorial Staff
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As volunteers fanned out across area parks for “It’s My Park Day,” on Saturday, May 19, they enjoyed the opportunity to spruce up local oases under a gorgeous blue sky.

Around the five boroughs, thousands of people got a chance to give back to New York City by volunteering to paint park benches, clean lamp poles, pick up garbage, and help clean up the shoreline, among other beneficiary activities.

In Bay Ridge, the Arab American Association of New York and the Shore Road Parks Conservancy partnered to clean up the portion of Shore Road Park near 97th Street.

“Our community’s response to increased Islamophobia in New York has always been to extend our tradition and love of service to our fellow New Yorkers through community-building activities and service projects throughout the year. Today is just one example,” said Linda Sarsour, director of the Brooklyn-based Arab American Association of New York.

President of the Shore Road Parks Conversancy, Linda Allegretti, believed the event was overall “incredibly successful.”

With a total of 400 people volunteering their time to better the community on the six sites the Conservancy had, they were all able to work together in “beautiful harmony,” Allegretti said.

Allegretti and the 40 volunteers working together, “largely planted 300 plants and five trees,” with the mission to “maintain, improve, promote and protect the acres of parkland and waterfront area of Bay Ridge.”

They had sponsors, such as Circles, which provided them with apples as they devoted their morning to enhancing the environment.

In addition, Fort Hamilton High School students were on hand, and there was a great turnout from the Russian and Chinese residents of Shore Hill Senior Center, Allegretti said.

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