City of Peoria and Eureka College Athletics join to clean up the East Bluff

Published: Aug. 12, 2022 at 6:00 PM CDT
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PEORIA (25 News Now) - Some ways to get outside and enjoy the nice weather are going for a hike, soaking up the sun at the pool, or picking up trash off the streets. That’s exactly what the City of Peoria and Eureka College student-athletes did this Friday morning. The East Bluff community is looking cleaner thanks to the second annual community pick-up event.

Some city employees and incoming freshmen student-athletes from Eureka College joined forces to pick up trash off the streets. Bryan Moore, the Eureka College Athletic Director, said “You know this is really for them their first couple of days as a part of our campus community. Some of them are coming from very far away. It’s a chance for them to kind of change it up and do something nice for the community and roll up their sleeves, literally.”

For the athletes, it’s more than just an opportunity to give back to the community. It’s also their first chance to bond with their new teammates. Jaden Randall, a cross country student-athlete from Eureka College, said “I’ve gotten to know a lot of people on my cross team and then I’ve talked to a few other people on other sports teams. It’s nice to just be able to help others too. It’s a good opportunity. I love it.”

For Zachary Coats, another student-athlete and member of the east bluff community who had been away serving in the Navy, it was more personal. “It means a lot for me man, ya know coming back home after a 10 year hiatus. Since before I left here and since I’ve been back there’s been dirt on the streets, so I don’t mind picking it up” said Coats.

Between 100 and 125 bags of trash were collected. Joe Dulin, the Director of Community Development, said “It’s our way of setting an example for the community too, ya know if everyone took some time to go around and pick up litter. It would really solve the litter issue in Peoria.” Dulin also hopes it can attract more people to the River City. He added, “It’s really part of our strategy for long term sustainability and growth in Peoria is trying to attract younger generations to continue to live here.”

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