Man takes on cleaning up downtown Augusta; looking for more help

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News 12 @ 11 o'clock / Saturday, Nov. 22, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- If you walk downtown on a Saturday or Sunday morning, you might notice some cigarette butts or maybe an empty bottle or can.

One man has stepped up and is picking up the streets of downtown Augusta.

This is what a typical weekend morning looks like for Glen Ford.

"Every Saturday and Sunday that I'm here I'm going to do it," Ford said.

It started after lunch one day.

"It was a Sunday at like 3 o'clock and I noticed all of the trash. There was just tons of trash just right here," he said.

He picked it up, but he didn't stop there.

"I just started noticing just how often the trash would get left out. I bought some buckets and some picker-upper things and I just started picking up the trash," he tells News 12.

Now he's out here picking up what others have left behind.

"Someone had to do it and I'm the kind of person when I want something done I just do it. I don't wait," he said.

He even started a Facebook group, Operation Clean City, hoping to get other people, like David Hutchison, involved.

"Downtown is very important to us. I mean we live downtown, we work downtown, our business is downtown, our life is downtown," the Book Tavern owner said.

And now Hutchison is also cleaning downtown.

"I was one of those people who, I'd look at it, occasionally I'd pick something up, but I really had never thought to make a concerted effort to pick up the trash all of the time," Hutchison said.

Ford says it's less about picking up trash, and more about pride. Something he picked up from his hometown, New Orleans.

"It's that sense of pride that I got from there that makes me want to pass on here. Like be proud of your city, if you live somewhere take care of it," Ford said.

A thought that's starting to rub off.

"Everyone always talks about and says, 'Oh I see Augusta has all this potential.' Well let's love this city, let's pick up the trash let's make a difference," Hutchison said.

"I don't want to see that trash, I assume other people don't want to see that trash, so I'll step up and I'll do it," Ford said.

One step toward putting the can on a dirty Augusta.

Glen is leaving Augusta in February, so he hopes someone else picks up where he left off. If you want to get involved, you can go to Operation Clean City's Facebook page.