In its first full year, Pick Up the Poconos has achieved remarkable results in the effort to curb unsightly litter and to help improve our communities throughout the four counties which make up the Pocono Mountains.
“This success could not have been achieved alone,” said Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau President & CEO Chris Barrett. “Our community partners were integral to making our region more beautiful and helping those less fortunate in the process.”
Pick Up the Poconos was launched in the spring of 2018 to raise awareness of the negative ways litter affects our region including the destination’s curb appeal to the nearly 28 million visitors to the Poconos. Not only that, but the campaign has enlisted volunteers and organizations to get involved in removing as much litter and debris as possible from alongside our roadways and public spaces.
Soon, the effort expanded to three more counties in the region to form an anti-litter coalition in Luzerne, Lehigh and Northampton counties. Then in June, the Pocono Mountains United Way, RHD’s Street 2 Feet Outreach Center and the Monroe County Municipal Waste Management Authority joined forces with the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau to create Pocono Community Caring Company (Pocono 3C).
The program is designed to give individuals facing homelessness a job helping to clean litter from the roads while receiving counseling on their way to permanent housing and possible full-time employment. The PMVB, along with numerous partners throughout the region, are extremely pleased to share the following results:
Pocono 3C (June - November 2019)
- 58 men and women participated
- 3,472 bags collected
- 185 tires collected
- 162 miles cleaned
- 25 men and women found permanent housing as a result of participating in Pocono 3C
2nd Annual Pick Up the Poconos Day (September 29, 2019)
- 371 volunteers
- 738 bags collected
- 60 miles cleaned across 8 municipalities in Monroe County
Adopt A Highway Maintenance Corp. (2019)
- 3,560 bags collected weighing approximately 32,040 pounds
- Cleaned medians, ramps and shoulders of Interstate 80 and Interstate 380
Grand Total: 7,770 bags of litter
- “Pick Up the Poconos was a great success this year because we had so many volunteers contributing to the beautification of our township,” said Middle Smithfield Township Supervisor Mike Dwyer. “Pride in the Poconos was exemplified by the residents and business owners who donated just a few hours and made significant improvements.”
- “We’ve come from one of the worst to one of the best in the state,” said Senator Mario Scavello (R-40th District). “With the amount of traffic on our roads we’ve done a phenomenal job at keeping the Poconos clean. It’s a testament to the PMVB and its partners. When people work together, good things happen.”
- “Since the inception of Pick Up the Poconos, there has been a major improvement on the roads,” added Monroe County Commissioner John Christy. “We are trying to put the best foot forward and create awareness that Monroe County is a wonderful place to live, work and play.”
About the Pocono Mountains
With 2,400 square miles encompassing Pennsylvania’s Wayne, Pike, Monroe, and Carbon counties, the Pocono Mountains region is home to rolling mountain terrain, breathtakingly beautiful waterfalls, thriving woodlands and 170 miles of winding rivers. Winters offer guests the opportunity to ski, snowboard, snow tube and even snowshoe their way through snowy wonderlands encompassing more than 163 ski trails, while summers also cater to the active traveler allowing exploration of 261 miles of hiking and biking trails, more than 30 golf courses, whitewater rafting, boating, fishing and open access to nine state and two national parks.
Pocono Mountains visitor information is available online at PoconoMountains.com or by phone at (570) 421-5791. Follow @PoconoTourismPR on Twitter to stay current with up-to-date information. Established in 1934, the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau is a private, non-profit membership organization. The PMVB is the official destination marketing organization for the four counties of Wayne, Pike, Monroe, and Carbon in Northeastern Pennsylvania.