published Monday, March 14th, 2011

Rhea planning makeover

By Kimberly McMillian
Brandy Anderson, chairwoman of the Rhea Economic and Tourism Council’s Beautification Committee.
Brandy Anderson, chairwoman of the Rhea Economic and Tourism Council’s Beautification Committee.

TO PARTICIPATE

For more information about volunteering for Rhea County’s Beautification Committee, call Brandy Anderson at 423-775-7801. The committee will meet the first Wednesday of each month, with the next meeting set for April 6 at 12:15 p.m.

DAYTON, Tenn.—Rhea County soon will undergo a cleanup makeover once a team of volunteers, mayors and local clubs is assembled.

Brandy Anderson has been given the job of chairwoman of this year’s Beautification Committee for the Rhea Economic and Tourism Council. One of her jobs is gathering members for the committee.

“We thought it would be a natural fit for her,” said Anita Crittenden, the tourism council’s Three-Star coordinator.

Anderson said she’d like the mayors of Dayton, Spring City and Graysville to join the cleanup efforts.

She said she’s also “been trying to get Rhea County partnered with a recycling coalition” such as the Keep America Beautiful nonprofit organization.

Keep America Beautiful works with volunteers in communities across America to remove graffiti, plant trees and create gardens to attract tourism and growth.

With the help of county employees, Rhea County Executive George Thacker started clearing out brush and garbage at Roaring Creek in Graysville last fall. Those efforts temporarily have halted because of the rainy, wintry weather, but they will resume this spring, Thacker said.

Spring City Mayor Mary Sue Garrison said cleanup efforts would begin later this spring at a local nature center.

Anderson said restoring the Rhea Springs area was a priority. It “used to be where you could go” for family time, she said. She said the pavilion there could be used once the campgrounds were restored, and that the beach needs sand.

Volunteers also are needed to assist the elderly or disabled to maintain their yards, Anderson said. All efforts, she said, would help residents to sell homes in the communities and would attract prospective newcomers.

She said after the last meeting that Rhea County High School students had attended it and asked to help clean yards and to form a recycling committee at the school.

From March 1 to May 31, Keep America Beautiful will sponsor its annual “Great American Cleanup.” Last year, more than 5.7 million hours were volunteered in the national campaign.

Kimberly McMillian is based in Rhea County. Contact her at kdj424@bellsouth.net.

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