Keep Chestertown Beautiful

New “Keep Chestertown Beautiful” Group To Focus on Litter, Recycling and Plantings

Chestertown, MD (September 16, 2019) – Chestertown will soon have a chapter of the Keep American Beautiful (KAB) program, thanks to volunteers from several civic organizations who are partnering to keep the Town clean and greener.  As a new committee under the umbrella of Main Street Chestertown, the Keep Chestertown Beautiful group will access the national KAB program’s resources and grants to further improvements in three major areas: anti-littering, recycling and beautification.  Representatives of Main Street Chestertown, the Chestertown Environmental Committee, the Chestertown Garden Club, and the Curb Appeal Committee have been meeting to organize the effort. 

As part of its affiliation process, on Tuesday, September 24, Keep Chestertown Beautiful will conduct a Community Appearance Index survey that assesses indicators such as litter, illegal signs, graffiti, abandoned/junk vehicles and outside storage. Walking, driving and biking through Chestertown streets and along the rail trail, volunteers will follow KAB’s system of scoring, which rates the amount of visual blight on a scale of 1 (minimal or no litter visible) to 4 (extremely littered).  

Keep America Beautiful’s national President and CEO, Matt McKenna, explains that the Community Appearance Index survey should be completed once a year to help develop local plans to change attitudes and behaviors regarding issues of visual blight. “The Index helps direct local programs for litter prevention, beautification, and waste reduction and recycling,” he adds. 

In addition, Keep Chestertown Beautiful will conduct local interviews and research to compile what KAB calls a “Focus Area Survey.” It’s an inventory of existing resources — government agencies, programs, volunteer groups, ordinances, enforcement tools, etc. — available for litter control, beautification, waste reduction and recycling. 

According to its newly adopted mission statement, the newly formed Keep Chestertown Beautiful committee will “work to improve the visual experience for residents and visitors and increase community pride through improved stewardship of the local environment. KCB will develop strategies to combat litter, improve recycling and enhance the streetscape through plantings, furniture and other amenities. As an affiliate of Keep America Beautiful, KCB operates as a component of the Main Street Chestertown nonprofit and is led by a steering committee whose members are drawn from existing organizations with missions related to beautification, recycling, and anti-littering.”

Led by Chair David Sobers and Vice Chair Barbara Slocum, KCB seeks volunteers to join in the satisfying work of making the greater downtown district cleaner and more inviting.  Email manager@mainstreetchestertown.org or call 410-778-2991 to express your interest. 

Keep America Beautiful, Inc., established in 1953, is the nation’s largest volunteer-based community action and education organization. With a network of nearly 1,000 affiliate and participating organizations, Keep America Beautiful forms public-private partnerships and programs that engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community’s environment. To learn more, visit www.kab.org

Main Street Historic Chestertown, doing business as Main Street Chestertown, works to foster an inviting, diverse and prosperous downtown. Its vision is a welcoming and vibrant waterfront community where people of all ages are drawn to live, work, shop, and enjoy recreational and cultural activities in a beautiful setting.