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Fall cleanup clears tires, leaves, more tires, a toilet and still more tires

Trash, brush and so many tires

Residents, city employees and volunteers worked at the Marlborough Community Coalition's third annual Fall Clean Sweep. As many as 600 tires came in during the first hour of the four-hour event.
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Residents, city employees and volunteers worked at the Marlborough Community Coalition's third annual Fall Clean Sweep. As many as 600 tires came in during the first hour of the four-hour event.

Tires. Too many tires. Hundreds of tires. More tires than Brenda Thomas had expected to see.

Now, no one will see those tires or the trash and brush that were plucked from vacant lots, church yards and other parts of five neighborhoods Saturday morning as part of the Marlborough Community Coalition’s Fall Clean Sweep.

“What we really want to focus on is having our neighborhood to be clean, and the city can’t do it by itself. That’s why it’s important that the neighborhoods pitch in and do their part,” said Thomas, president of the coalition.

Kansas City employees operated three trash trucks and one for limbs and brush at the Center Alternative School, 85th Street and The Paseo. Residents and volunteers, including a team from Burns & McDonnell, brought whatever they found abandoned and dumped, or just needed to get rid of.

Mattresses, a toilet, cut-up chunks of wooden playground equipment, carpet, chairs and you name it came into the coalition’s third annual fall cleanup, which grew out of a spring event that has run for nine years.

More than one load Saturday came from a lot along East 77th Terrace that Thomas said was “horrible.” The home was being renovated and its contents had been pushed to the curb. Others added to the pile uninvited, she said.

“Today, we have a little bit of everything,” Thomas said.

Especially tires. Oh, so many tires, even after earlier sweeps had cleared many from the neighborhoods.

“I wasn’t expecting so many tires,” Thomas said. “But I see, this time, here we are again. We’ve got a lot of tires.”

“This was the most tires we’ve ever seen. These guys picked up from everywhere,” added Jim Hoelzel, the school district facilities director who has seen nearly all of the coalition’s events.

As many as 600 tires had arrived in just the first hour of the 8-to-noon drop-off site’s operation. That was an eyeball estimate from David Gassen, who would drive the tire-filled tractor trailer to ABC Tire LLC for recycling.

Steve Walker brought in about 30 tires he’d found in the neighborhood. He’s part of a team that mows vacant lots for the Land Bank of Kansas City.

“They were just brought in and dumped on a vacant piece of property,” Walker said of the tires. “We have cameras. I’m trying to catch them.”

Mark Davis: 816-234-4372, @mdkcstar

More tire drop-off dates

▪ Nov. 5 and Nov. 19, Environmental Campus, 4707 Deramus Ave., 9 a.m. to 5 p. m.

▪ Nov. 5, Manual Tech Career Center, 1320 Truman Road, 8 a.m. to noon.

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