Troutman Parks and Recreation spearheaded an effort to clean up litter along town streets that are not yet part of the Adopt-A-Street program on Thursday afternoon in honor of Earth Day.

In just under two hours, about 40 volunteers collected 669 pounds of refuse, including odd items such as old televisions, tires, street signs, and beds. Town Manager Ron Wyatt said neighbors thanked volunteers for their efforts in several areas.

“That in itself speaks to what efforts you all gave to come out here and the difference you made,” added Wyatt.

Pointing to pile pile of orange bags, Wyatt added, “The impact of seeing what is there does not do justice to the impact on these communities.”

Parks and Recreation Director Emily Watson welcomed volunteers to the event, explaining that volunteers would cover 10 zones in the town and return to Town Hall in 90 minutes to weigh in the collected debris.

Miss Metrolina Kaitlyn Sparks explained the significance of Earth Day, which began in 1970 after an oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara, Calif., caused massive environmental damage and wildlife casualties.

Wisconsin Sen. Gaylord Nelson and activist Denis Hayes were inspired to create a teach-in on April 22, 19070, which morphed into the annual Earth Day, a day of environmental action that has now spread across the globe.

Wyatt thanked the community volunteers, including representatives from Troutman Baptist Church, Friends of Lake Norman State Park, Engineered Sintered Components, Troutman Rotary Club, Troutman Small Business Network, Iredell County Parks and Recreation, the Troutman Elementary Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Agriculture & Science Early College Beta Club, and the Troutman Parks and Recreation Committee, who supported this effort.

Watson also thanked the Troutman Rotary Club and ESC provided water for the event.