Pictured above: Jean and Jim Dooley and their dog, Durango...along with family members, have been cleaning up Pico Promenade for close to 20 years.
Not everyone in Fallbrook knows about the four blocks of scenic pathways that run between Elder and Fallbrook Streets, just West of downtown Main Avenue. This unique stretch is fondly named the Pico Promenade as the pathway heads South from where S. Pico ends at Elder Street. Although not know to all, every foot of the Promenade is well know to Jean Dooley, who has been picking up trash and helping to beautify the stretch for almost 20 years.
Jean volunteered initially at the request of the Fallbrook Village Association, who was looking for volunteers to pick up trash around town. That was back in the year 2000. "The first thing I asked for were trashcans", Jean shared when asked about her long time service, "as there were none in place at the time". For years Jean, along with her previous baby-sitter cleaned the paths, but after her sitter moved away in 2003, Jean's husband Jim took her place, working with her to pick up trash and empty the trashcans. During that time, care for the Pico Promenade was adopted by the Fallbrook Beautification Alliance, who along with Save our Forest, various Eagle Scouts, and other interested citizens and students, added and painted benches, installed decorative fencing, replaced plants and signage and continue to fight to eliminate graffiti. In 2014 their dog Durango joined the team!
In early March Jean managed the installation of five new trashcans, funded by a grant received by the Fallbrook Beautification Alliance. The heavy duty trashcans, constructed of heavy steel were ordered with a special protective cover to keep rain water out and trash in. Jean and her "team of two" pick up trash along the pathway, including
cigarette butts, and empty all the trashcans. They place the collected trash in a trash bin provided at no cost by EDCO Waste & Recycling. The many collected cigarette butts are
added to those responsibly disposed of by smokers in the cigarette recycling unit located next to one of the benches, also provided by the FBA. Once a month Jean packages all the collected cigarette butts in a box which she mails to Terracycle Recycling Company to be recycled into a variety of industrial products such as plastic pallets, and where the remaining tobacco is composted.
Another person and business that was a major help is Brad Urqhart, owner of Fallbrook Fertilizer Feed and Farm Supplies, a business that is adjacent to the Promenade. "Mr. Urqhart accepted the delivery of the trashcans and kept them safely on his property until the installation was scheduled", Jean shared. And with an eye to the best use of all resources both new and used, Jean and Jim felt that three of the five old trashcans removed may have still had some life in them so they were donated to the Fallbrook Land Conservancy who was able to conveniently collect them up from the Farm Supply store. Mr. Urqhart agreed to get rid of the remaining unusable cans as part of his company's trash collection. Jean complimented Mr. Urquart's saying "he has been a wonderful supporter. He donates water to Save Our Forest group for the plantings along the pathway, provides the loaner cart we use when picking up trash, and took care of all our needs with the installation of the new trashcans".
Although Jean and Jim welcome any volunteer help, they are committed. Jean closed by saying, "our family, (two sons, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, sister-in-law and nephew) all have special t-shirts and help us with the Pico pick-up when they visit during the holidays". Now that is dedication.
FBA's next project is to raise money to install additional cigarette butt recycling units and pet waste stations. If you are interested in this or any other project the Fallbrook Beautification Alliance is involved in helping to maintain and beautify Fallbrook's public spaces, please visit www.fallbookbeautification.org
Shown above from left to right: The Annet family-Julie, Jean-Luc, and Arianna; Sheila Simmons; and Marta Donovan surrounded by the litter collected from a March, 2019 cleanup of the Santa Margarita Preserve.
Items found include a sofa, television, steam vacuum cleaner, car accident debris, construction debris, car cover, dead cat in a box, etc.
30% of the litter items were abled to be recycled at EDCO.
"Keeping Fallbrook Litter Free" is the goal of the Fallbrook Beautification Alliance for 2019. The program kickoff and first community-wide cleanup was held Saturday, Jan. 12th at Don Dussault County Park, and several cleanup events have been held since then.
After years of hosting semiannual cleanups around Fallbrook, the Fallbrook Beautification Alliance recognized that an ongoing effort, engaging volunteers throughout the year, would be a more effective way to address the trash problem along local roadways, ravines, parks and neighborhoods.
Partnering with I Love A Clean San Diego and Adopt-A-Road, Todd Jester of the Fallbrook Public Utility District and Marta Donovan, coordinator of the Keeping Fallbrook Litter Free program, divided central Fallbrook into 20 zones, covering 49 square miles in total.
The program goal is for a "zone captain" to adopt each zone and, working with a team of volunteers, to keep that zone trash free. Each volunteer is challenged to pick up at least one 5-gallon bucket worth of litter each week.
The Fallbrook Beautification Alliance offers each participant who enrolls a safety vest, a 5-gallon bucket, a litter grabber and work gloves. With the help of the zone captains, the group will track the program's success based on the amount of trash collected monthly, and the results will be posted on the organization's website.
Studies have shown that trash left on streets and parks may decrease property values, spread disease and make these areas less pedestrian and children friendly. With approximately 80 percent of coastal trash coming from inland watersheds, volunteers are making a difference in the ocean's health as well as in local creek beds, canyons and communities.
Additionally, Fallbrook Beautification Alliance provides credits to volunteers in need of school community service hours.
To see which zone a home or business is in, visit https://arcg.is/0irSqC.
For more information or to enroll in the program, please call
Marta Donovan at 760-405-4054.
In January, after several months of soil and site preparation, the staff of Landscape One, Inc. installed new plants and hardscape in the South Mission Medians.
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