“While photos can’t always capture or show the efforts that went into a project of this scope, of this size, I hope that it can relay, report, a little bit of the story. If not, we can show you the battle wounds from the 12-foot high, Pyracantha, a fire, thorn bush, (a darn good name for it), a fast-growing hedge plant with an average growth rate of up to 50cm, 20 inches per year, that took a bite out of us working on the project. However that may be, we did prevail!!!” wrote Tim Cosgrove, after a horde of volunteers from Keller Williams Salt Lake City (KWSLC) descended on the overgrown and debris strewn yard.
Before her health declined, the homeowner tended a rose garden on the east side of the yard, planted several aspen trees, and more recently a fruit tree. But when she couldn’t keep up, the roses and fruit tree were buried under overgrown weeds.
Code enforcement gave her notice after notice because the overgrown corner lot obstructed the view of drivers. It didn’t help and they realized no amount of threat could change things, she needed help. So they reached out to City leadership including Community Outreach and Tim Cosgrove, the Salt Lake City Mayors Office Community Liaison. Tim reached out to Landon Clark, Chair of the Sugar House Community Council, and asked if he knew anyone who could help, or maybe, “we could just go over and pull weeds ourselves.”
Meanwhile, KWSLC was looking for a community project for their annual day of service called Red Day. Because they’d dedicated their fundraising support for 2021 to the Sugar House Chamber, they asked me if I knew of any businesses who needed 30-50 volunteers to help with a project. At a loss for a project so big, I asked Landon. “I don’t know of a business that needs that kind of help, but there’s a homeowner on Crandall Avenue in need,” he shared.
Surprisingly no one needed stitches or worse, but I won’t rule out there may be some scars from land war that took place on Crandall Avenue last week. There were chainsaws, tow straps, and a large pickup involved in the effort to move some of it to the curb.
In the end there was the equivalent of at least two Dumpster loads of debris. Because the effort was coordinated with the City, they arranged a Call2Haul pick up the next morning. It required heavy equipment.
Cosgrove extended his thanks in the email, “Of course todays success was not without the culmination of efforts from many individuals, agencies and organizations. I would really like to take a minute and recognize the individuals and organizations that when asked for support from a local neighbor didn’t point the finger to someone else but answered, “What Can We, I, Do!””
Involved in the project were:
- CAT, Community Action Team, District 7
- SLC Civil Enforcement
- Keller Williams Salt Lake City Real Estate, the Sugar House business with nearly 50 volunteers involved
- Sugarhouse Community Council leadership
- Sugar House Chamber leadership
- SLC Department of Public Services
- SLC Call2 Haul, Department of Sustainability
- Mayor’s Office, SLC Mayor Erin Mendenhall
An email from the Civil Enforcement Officer summed up the results, “Just want to give a big shout out to all who helped in this clean-up. Great job and it looks fabulous!! This case is now closed.”
I’m proud of how our community joined together to care for its own.