WJTV News Channel 12 - Parkway Volunteers Find 625 Whipped Cream Cans

Parkway Volunteers Find 625 Whipped Cream Cans

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“Love Your Parkway” Cleanup Sheds Light on “Dangerous” Behavior

Volunteers involved in an effort to clean up litter along Mill Mountain Parkway were amazed by the 625

whipped cream spray cans they retrieved. While most of the discarded cans were still full of whipped cream,

their other contents – the nitrous oxide propellant was gone – presumably inhaled for a brief “high.”

“The abuse has been reported to the National Park Service

-Blue Ridge Parkway, local law enforcement officials

and the media,” said Heidi Ketler, Roanoke Valley Chapter chair of Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway, which

led the “Love Your Parkway” Cleanup March 22. “The hope is that greater community awareness will help end

destructive and criminal behavior on the parkway.”

A total of 24 individuals contributed 83 volunteer hours and picked up an estimated 1,460 pounds of

recyclables and trash during the four

-hour event. For a distance of about two miles – cleanup teams assigned

to parts of JP Fishburn Parkway and Mill Mountain Parkway picked up litter beyond the roadway and

overlooks and were surprised at what they found:

* 625 whipped cream cans – a snapshot of the "recreational drug" abuse on the parkway.

* 320 pounds of recyclables: metal cans, plastic (No. 1 & No. 2) and glass that went to RDS.

* An est. 640 pounds trash: including the usual styrofoam cups, wrappers and diapers and all the whipped

cream cans

- that went to the landfill.

* Add to that another 500 pounds that included: 2 parking signs, 1 shopping cart,1 gas tank, 1 hub cap (to be

recycled), 1 boom box, 1 portable TV, 1 tire, 1 VCR, 1 broken wooden bureau, (2) 8.8

-pound lifting weights, 1

smashed auto windshield, 1 muffler and 1 gas tank.

*Additionally, hundreds of aluminum can tabs were collected and will be cashed in for the Ronald MacDonald

House. Proceeds will go toward the annual expenditure for food.

The cleanup was in coordination with Clean Valley Council, so the total amounts from Saturday will go toward

Clean Valley Day, Saturday, April 5. That’s when FRIENDS will return to the parkway to focus on the areas

missed this past weekend and along the Mill Mountain Spur to the Roanoke Star.

The improvement to the areas addressed was noticeable. “Wouldn’t it be nice, if the roadsides always looked

like this!” observed Edith and Ron Reese.
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