The Trash Bash is typically the largest volunteer event of the year for Keep Irving Beautiful (KIB), with hundreds of people gathering in one location for a cleanup. The COVID-19 pandemic necessitated some changes to that plan, but did not stop the 29th annual event from proceeding. The event became a social media-driven activity with a focus on safety first.
KIB worked with the City of Irving’s Special Events team and the Communications Department to plan the event. The team created a Facebook event page with all the safety guidelines and instructions for reporting, as well as a video to promote the event. From Sept. 14 -26, volunteers were asked to conduct cleanups at a safe location of their own choosing, in groups of 10 or less. To report their results, volunteers posted pictures or videos from their cleanup to one of three social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram), and included the hashtag #IrvingTrashBash. Participants also included the number of volunteers, hours, and bags of trash and recyclables collected.
The 129 volunteers, 95 adults and 34 youth, gave 188 hours of service, and collected 139 bags of trash and recyclables from locations throughout the city. Each volunteer was entered into a prize drawing, which included prizes donated by American Airlines, Via Real, Cork and Pig and Glory House.
Mayor Stopfer officially proclaimed Sept. 26 as “Trash Bash Day in Irving.” The day also was recognized at the state and national level. For the ninth straight year, the Trash Bash was a National Public Lands Day event, and also was a Keep Texas Beautiful “Fall Sweep” event. The Trash Bash also has been associated with a canned food drive for the past several years. This year, volunteers were asked to consider making a financial donation to Crisis Ministries of Irving or any food pantry of their choice.
“KIB has hosted this event since 1992 and it has become an Irving tradition each fall,” said KIB Board President Scott Wilson. “On behalf of the board of directors, KIB would like to thank all of the volunteers who participated in this year’s Trash Bash. While KIB missed seeing everyone, this turned out to be a great opportunity for volunteers to serve.”
Keep Irving Beautiful is a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating the community about litter abatement, recycling, and beautification to help preserve the health and promote the social and economic prosperity of the city. As an award-winning affiliate of Keep America Beautiful and Keep Texas Beautiful, Keep Irving Beautiful reaches out to all sectors of the community, including government, businesses, churches, as well as cultural, educational, neighborhood and civic organizations. For more information on volunteering with KIB or making an activity a “green event,” visit CityofIrving.org/284/Keep-Irving-Beautiful or call (972) 721-2175.