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Nine groups, individuals adopt streets, pledging to keep them clean of litter

by Tia Lyons | November 17, 2021 at 12:00 a.m.
Members of Leadership Union County clean up in the neighborhoods around the old El Dorado High School building in this News-Times file photo.

Keep El Dorado Beautiful held its last regular meeting of the year earlier this week, agreeing to take December off and regroup for 2022.

Save for a holiday gathering that is open to the public, KEB members are not expected to meet again until Jan. 17, which is Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

KEB is capping off 2021 with commitments from several groups and individuals who have agreed to adopt streets throughout the city to keep clean.

They include:

• Simmons Bank, Timberlane between Hillsboro and Robert E. Lee/Arkansas 15.

• Camp Fire El Dorado, Arkansas Avenue.

• El Dorado Civitan Club, 19th Street between College and Martin Luther King avenues.

• College Avenue Church of Christ, College Avenue between 19th and Eighth streets.

• Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church, No. 2, College Avenue between 19th to Robin Road.

• The Williams Family, East Second and Ramsey streets.

• Delek, Robert E. Lee Street.

• Young Artist Studio, South Washington Avenue between Hillsboro and East Sharp.

• Elaine Strickland, Madison Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets.

KEB member Dianne Hammond, who also serves on the El Dorado City Council, said the City Shop is making signs to denote the streets that have been adopted and their adopters.

Hammond said the signs could be ready next week and Janis Van Hook, president of KEB, said the group plans to take photos with the signs and respective street adopters once the signs have been installed.

Van Hook said KEB is pleased with the number of groups and individuals who have stepped up to adopt streets and that KEB members hope that the number grows.

She said some of the adopters, such as the El Dorado Camp Fire group, had already been working to keep the areas litter-free.

"Now, we're just giving them a sign," Van Hook said.

The street adoptions are part of an outreach effort by KEB to get more people involved in building a sustainable campaign to help keep El Dorado clean.

KEB assisted Habitat for Humanity with a neighborhood cleanup on Nov. 6 in the Askew Addition, which is the site of Habitat's most recent new-home construction project.

Habitat broke ground on its first house -- its 40th overall in El Dorado -- in the Askew Addition in 2014 as part of a project to build five houses and help revitalize the neighborhood, which is located a block south of East Hillsboro behind Joe's Tire Service.

Land that was donated to Habitat by the Robert Reynolds and Margaret Reynolds-Hadley family centers around Petroleum, East Second and Ramsey streets.

Habitat has built three of the five houses in the Askew Addition and has said there is enough space to accommodate a maximum of six houses.

Representatives from Habitat and Askew residents recently approached the El Dorado City Council asking for help in improving safety in the neighborhood following a shooting that occurred in late September.

No injuries were reported in the shooting, but resident and Habitat homeowner Corey Williams told council members that bullets from the early morning shooting whizzed past his residence as he and his family lay sleeping, ultimately striking the fence in his yard.

A few city officials attended Habitat's regular meeting in October and one of the ideas the group discussed was a neighborhood cleanup.

"They had about 25 to 30 people and they were well pleased. They got a lot of stuff done and they reported (Monday) there has been very little litter on the ground in the days since the cleanup," Van Hook said.

She said KEB is also planning a digital billboard campaign to encourage residents to help keep the city clean during the holiday season.

KEB is also scheduled to speak today with the Leadership Union County Class at the El Dorado-Union County Chamber of Commerce.

"They wanted to be a part of KEB and we're going to be working with them on some ideas. We'll discuss further details with them today," Van Hook said.

To help raise their visibility and their mission during the holiday season, KEB members also agreed to serve as bell ringers in the Salvation Army's Red Kettle campaign, an annual fundraiser.

KEB is finalizing plans for a holiday gathering, which is tentatively scheduled for 6 - 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9 in the Charles H. Murphy Boardroom at the El Dorado-Union County Chamber of Commerce, 111 W. Main.

The event is open to the public.

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