In honor of Earth Day, the South Bethany Community Enhancement Committee (CEC) landscaped a Town-owned canal end.
“This is our second year, and we’re really excited,” said Sue Calloway, a South Bethany Town Council member and chair of the CEC. “We had talked about ways to get volunteers in the community — to encourage volunteerism and community spirit. So we came up with the idea to adopt one on Earth Day last year.”
Callaway said that Mayor Kathy Jankowski came up with the idea for the Town’s Adopt-A-Canal/Road End program four years ago.
“Right now, we’re up to 26 canal ends,” said Callaway, noting that the Town has more than 50 canal and road ends in all. “We prioritized all the canal and road ends, in terms of their need to be adopted. So we decided to choose from one of the ones that we felt really needed to be adopted. We try to pick ones that are in need of improvement.”
Adopting and beautifying the canal and road ends are not only an aesthetic improvement for the Town, which has both vehicle and pedestrian traffic, but also makes an environmental impact.
“Visually, when you see the picture before, the junipers really blocked the view of the canal. So we wanted to open up the canal end visually,” Callaway explained. “We know, working closely with the water quality — George Junkin and I — the more plants you have to absorb the water runoff, the better.”
Nearly 100 plants from Lords Landscaping were planted on April 22, including society garlic, dwarf holly and drift rose. With the help of Public Works staff members Don Chrobot and Rick Gentile, along with members of the CEC, the canal end landscaping was completed.
The canal end will be maintained by South Bethany resident Pat Weisgerber.
“It’s a very quiet, family-oriented community. I feel like the grandkids are safe here,” she said.
Weisgerber and her husband have been vacationing in South Bethany for 14 years, but became full-time residents a year ago.
“It’s a very community-oriented area. The people here are very sociable and friendly. It’s a great place to be.”
When given the opportunity to care for the canal end, Weisgerber said, she was excited.
“I love to garden. Now that I live here fulltime, I have more time,” she said. “Improvements like this make the property values stay up and keep the whole community looking nice. These ends — they don’t belong to anybody. They are owned by the Town, so we need to maintain them.”
Weisgerber said that maintaining the canal end will not be difficult, especially with the help of friends and neighbors.
“We’re probably going to do it in pairs or as a group, maybe pick a night and do a bunch of them together. It’s fun when you do it with a bunch of people, and you get to know your neighbors.”
Callaway said the Town would love for more residents to join the program and take an active part in the community.
“We’d love for homeowners to reach out and adopt one,” she said. “I think it’s real important to develop a connection with your community, and sometimes that’s a little challenging when you have a seasonal community.”
Callaway added that providing volunteer opportunities for residents is crucial to maintaining the Town’s close-knit community feel for generations to come.
For more information on adopting a canal or road end, visit the Town’s website at www. southbethany.org or call Town Hall at (302) 539-3653.