Church members do their part in city clean-up campaign

CAMDEN — Father Jud Weiksnar, pastor of St. Anthony of Padua Church, claims he has picked up three-quarters of a ton of trash and a ton-and-a-half of recyclables during his five years as pastor.

“And that was while I was walking my dog,” he said.

In keeping with the city’s clean-up campaign, he and others from Camden Churches Organized for People (CCOP), Adventure Aquarium, Cooper’s Ferry Development Association, and the city’s Department of Public Works, among others, met Aug. 11 at Von Nieda Park in Cramer Hill to accept Mayor Dana Redd’s city-wide Camden Clean challenge.

“There were about 60 people there,” said Father Weiksnar. Volunteers helped to clean up the park of trash and “the city carried away the refuse as did Waste Management trucks.”

One of the things that was going to take place on Aug. 11 was the application of yellow paint on curbs at Von Nieda Park to help keep illegally parked cars at a minimum.

But, Father Jud said, that didn’t happen. “The county and city were unable to come to an agreement on that project,” he said. “We are hoping to paint the curbs some time soon.”

Father Weiksnar noted that the Cramer Hill CCOP Organizing Committee met with representatives from Cooper’s Ferry, the county Parks Department, County Parks Police, and the city police to come up with improvements to the park.

Von Nieda, which is about a block from St. Anthony, Father Weiksnar noted, has been plagued with public drinking and sex, ATVs, loud music at night, excessive litter, and illegally dumped construction debris.

On July 11, the County Park Police issued tickets for illegal parking and public drinking and the city police have impounded more than 80 illegally owned ATVs in Camden.

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