On Sunday, volunteers from Germanna Nursing School, University of Mary Washington, local real estate agents and other groups came together to help clean up Hurkamp Park in Fredericksburg for an event called Love Scrub 2.
The volunteers trimmed trees, planted flowers, wiped down benches and spread mulch as a way to clean up the park and give back to the community.
“It’s just what the name implies, it’s kind of cheesy with Love Scrub, but it kind of works and we’re just giving it some love,” said Fredericksburg resident Chip Taylor.
Taylor, who is a Realtor at Long and Foster, came up with the idea for the Love Scrub event after walking downtown and seeing the parks were “looking a little scruffy.” So, he contacted the public works department to see if they needed help. Taylor’s son designed a logo for the event, and it grew from there, said Taylor.
“It’s just kind of evolved into a nice community service thing, but it’s very organic,” he said.
This was the second Love Scrub event planned by Taylor in recent weeks; the first event on June 27 was focused on Market Square in downtown.
The first Love Scrub was supposed to be a one-time event, said Taylor, but after walking by Hurkamp Park and noticing the park could use some refreshing, decided to host a second one.
“The biggest thing in this is just the volunteers. This is such a great time for the community to come together and really give back—be a part of something … This is people from all over the city that are coming together from different groups and organizations,” said Taylor.
He continued, “It really has been a nice thing to see. It makes me happier actually to see people out here than it does the landscaping.”
The National Association of Realtors gave Taylor a $3,000 grant to help pay for mulch, plants and any other items the volunteers would need. The grant was split between the two events, according to Taylor.
King George resident Donna Schimdt, 59, a member of the National Association of Realtors, was one of the volunteers at the event.
“We’re thankful, we’re thankful that we can do this and give back to the community,” she said. “With everything that is going on right now, everybody—they’re all coming together to do something good and positive, and I think that’s what we need. If we can do that here and show some of that here, maybe it’ll spread the word and spread the love.”
Carlene Gordan, 40, brought her son Chase, 6, to the event.
“I thought this was a good opportunity for him to come help me, help the community and to just teach him that it’s good to volunteer and help out,” she said. “There’s not a lot of opportunities for kids to do volunteer work and to help out the community so it’s nice that this is a kid-friendly event.”
Realtor Ieshia Leverette, 32, who volunteered at both events, felt that the Love Scrub allowed volunteers the opportunity to both give back and engage with the community.
“A lot of times as Realtors it seems like it’s more of a financial gain, but just things like this show appreciation for the community, bringing everybody together that’s really good for one purpose … Now when I walk past this park I’ll probably always try to pick up something or do something,” said Leverette.
Taylor is looking at doing another Love Scrub event in Fredericksburg sometime in the fall.
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