Contact: Kelly Vence

Office of Public Information

(908) 820-4124




ELIZABETH, NJ - April 25, 2013— Earlier today, J. Christian Bollwage kicked off Earth Day with a city-wide cleanup effort. In celebration, 427 volunteers from city, county and private organizations joined together to clean and beautify the neighborhoods throughout the City of Elizabeth, picking up well over 500 bags of litter.

“Each year, hundreds of people, from our youth to our senior citizens, volunteer on Earth Day to take part in cleaning our environment,” said Mayor J. Christian Bollwage. “Feeling good about our contributions to the preservation of the environment builds stronger communities and a healthier world and I would like to thank all of those who participate.”

The Earth Day event began at 9:00 a.m. outside of City Hall where participants registered and joined their designated teams. In turn, the volunteers cleaned various sites in Elizabeth, including: the Elizabeth Port, Elizabeth Avenue, Historic Midtown, Elmora Avenue Business District, Pearl Street (around Elizabeth High School) and Turnpike Exit 13. 

The event included teams from the Historic Midtown Special Improvement District, the Elizabeth Avenue Partnership, Union County College/CEWD, Groundwork Elizabeth, Brand New Day, IKEA, Elizabeth Development Company (EDC), Coca-Cola Company, Mira USA, NJ Youth Corps, EHS Key Club, Actavis, and First Ward Councilman Carlos Torres’ Team.

Concluding with an awards luncheon, held at the Union County College Kellogg Building, gold, silver and bronze brooms were given to the most successful cleanup teams.  This year’s winners included: 1st place - Union County College/CEWD; 2nd place - Historic Midtown Special Improvement District; 3rd place – NJ Youth Corps.

“Clean up events such as these give residents and local organizations the opportunity to work together to revitalize our City,” said First Ward Councilman, Carlos Torres “Through their hard work and dedicated efforts, these volunteers continue to make a difference in our communities and in the overall quality of life for our residents.”

This year’s Earth Day event was hosted by the City of Elizabeth, Union County College and New Jersey Clean Communities, a community driven, statewide litter abatement program funded by the Clean Communities Act. The program is managed by the New Jersey Clean Communities Council and the state departments of Environmental Protection and Treasury, which work with municipalities and counties to keep New Jersey clean.

Sponsors for the event include The City of Elizabeth, Union County, Elizabeth Town Gas, I-HOP, Groundwork Elizabeth, Historic Midtown Special Improvement District, Elizabeth Avenue Partnership, Coca-Cola Company, Waste Management and Regional Industries.