Please help Keep Carter County Beautiful by supporting our efforts.
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When you pick up trash/litter, please take a minute and tell us how much and where. We would like to include your efforts in our reporting to Keep America Beautiful. Click on the button below and you will be redirected to the reporting page:
Please join the Tennessee Clean Act initiative
Please stop and view this very important video from Tennessee Clean Act. We really need to act now!
Please do not ignore this issue. It impacts all of our lives and only we can fix it. We are not a political organization, but I would urge you to call, write or email your local and state representatives. Do not wait another day, act now to save our beautiful state. You can click on the logo below and the website will help you with your message.
Keep Carter County Beautiful – Tennessee Department of Transportation “No Trash November 2022”
Keep Carter County Beautiful, Roan Mountain Community and Americorps work together to install New Wayfinding Signs in Roan Mountain
Thank you to a special group of people with Americorps, the Roan Mountain Community and the Keep Carter County Beautiful (KCCB) Board Members for helping on this project. Last year KCCB delivered Wayfinding signs to Carter County. The signs were created to assist residents and visitors with information about some of our natural resources, attractions and parks. Earlier this year the Roan Mountain Community held a park dedication ceremony honoring long standing community leader Erik C. Anderson. The community installed a Wayfinding map and a sign naming the park Erik C. Anderson Park.
On Saturday October 29, 2022, eleven volunteers arrived in Roan Mountain to install additional wayfinding signs at Happy Trails Park and Hershel Julian Landing on the Doe River. In the coming months additional wayfinding signs will be installed to assist residents and visitors with enjoying all Carter County has to offer.
Keep Carter County Beautiful held a successful cleanup of Highway 321 on Saturday October 15, 2022
I am always a little anxious when KCCB hosts a cleanup event. Will the weather cooperate, will enough volunteers show up? On Saturday, October 15, 2022, Keep Carter County Beautiful held its second cleanup event of the year on Highway 321 between Elizabethton and Johnson City. This is a three mile stretch of highway that connects two wonderful counties and cities. The road is heavily traveled by citizens, tourists and workers, unfortunately this means lots of litter and trash.
We had 13 energetic volunteers show up for this event and they cleaned up just under 2 miles of highway. They removed 21 bags of trash, several pieces of cardboard, paint cans, plastic bins, and 5-gallon buckets. We had three great young volunteers show up to help. A special thank you to them from all of us. We hope to see you again and bring your friends along.
Unfortunately, a lot of trash remains out there. If we work as a community educating people about the damage being done, fining those who choose to ignore the law and cleaning up the existing problem areas we can fix this. Everyone who travels our Tennessee Roads should be aware that on of July 1, 2022, the Tennessee Legislature made littering our highways a $500 fine.
Please stop littering and save yourself some grief and money!
Elizabethton Covered Bridge Days were fantastic!
Thank you Mike Mains and the Elizabethton Parks and Recreation Department for a great 2022 Covered Bridge Days. Those of you who who missed this years festival really missed something special. The venues were great, the children’s bounce houses and foam party were great, the bands were great, the food was great, the crafts were great, and fireworks are always great. Mike Mains and the Parks and Recreation employees out did themselves again. The attendance this year was spectacular. Who says “NO” to free concerts and activities at one of the best venues around, not me. Parks and Recreation employees were spectacular during the entire event. Thank you to all of you.
Keep Carter County Beautiful shared one of the Parks and Recreation tents at the entrance to the park. It was a perfect location to meet people and talk about how we are keeping Carter County beautiful. Lisa Vezzosi (KCCB Secretary), Mary Hlavaty (KCCB Volunteer), and Ed Basconi (KCCB Board member) handed out swag, provided information, and took note of citizens concerns about dumping in Carter County. Don Hlavaty (KCCB Chair) and Mary Hlavaty (KCCB Volunteer) made several rounds picking up trash, making sure the venue was clean and neat all day. KCCB also furnished 9 Recycle bins. Thank you to all those who chose to recycle instead of throw away the plastic bottles and aluminum cans. Every item not thrown in the land fill helps.
If you missed the event this year, make sure you do not miss next years. Mike and the Parks and Recreation Department worked tirelessly and this event is one you should experience. See you at the Covered Bridge next year.
Keep Carter County Beautiful
Another successful cleanup of Milligan Highway
Fourteen wonderful volunteers spent a couple of hours Saturday mourning picking up litter and trash from Milligan Highway. Keep Carter County Beautiful adopted Milligan Highway from HWY 321 to Okolona Road several years ago and is working hard to maintain it as an example of how our roads can appear. This cleanup saw support from new volunteers and volunteers that know this stretch of road well. Thank you to the volunteers for making Carter County a beautiful place to live, work, and visit. Thank you to the Elizabethton Police Department for checking on us and keeping the road safe during the cleanup. Thank you to the Tennessee Department of Transportation for their support and quick pickup of the collected debris. We removed 14 large bags of trash, a matress, plywood, TV, and construction debris. This section of road looks so much better, thanks to the efforts of all involved.
Keep Carter County Beautiful provides recycle bins for Parks and Recreation Events
If you attended any of the great Elizabethton Parks and Recreation Events this summer at the Covered Bridge Park, you may have noticed something new. KCCB volunteers have been handing out free swag and providing conservation information. They also have been setting up recycle bins and collecting them afterward.
Keep in mind the recycle bins are for Aluminum Cans and Plastic bottles. You can also place those plastics marked type 1 and 2 in the bins. You should not be placing glass, styrofoam cups, trash or food waste in the recycle bins. Please help us recycle responsibly.
Keep Carter County Beautiful Wild Flower Plots come to life
Last year Ed Basconi (KCCB Board Member) had an idea to plant wild flowers along the Tweetsie and Linear Trails in Carter County. His idea was to provide some beauty to the residents using the trails and also provide a space for natures pollinators. With the help of Mike Mains and the Elizabethton Parks and Recreation employees, KCCB Board members and thier families, the idea came to life!
Last year was so successful that we had to do it again. In May of 2022, Mike Mains and the Parks and Recreation employees plowed up several plots along the Tweetsie and Linear Trails. The KCCB Board and their families came in behind them and raked the plots and planted the seeds. Then all we had to do is wait. We got the right amount of rain and sunshine and the flowers did their part. Once again you can travel the Tweetsie and Linear Trails and see the beauty. The bees, butterflies and birds love them too!
Keep Carter County Beautiful Blevins Road Litter Cleanup
Wow!! If you did not get a chance to join us at the Blevins Road Cleanup you missed the most enjoyable cleanup I have been part of. Eleven volunteers showed up on a gorgeous summer morning. The weather was great! The scenery was great! The pace was leisurely! and we removed 15 bags of litter and an office chair from the sides of the road and river bank. Not sure what the office chair was doing out there, I know they can’t fish? We had one resident offer to buy us lunch as encouragement to come back next year, but I let him know we are all volunteer and would come back anyway. We got instant gratitude when Commissioner Charlie Von Cannon stopped on his way home and thanked the crew for the great work we do.
Keep Carter County Beautiful Highway 321 Litter Cleanup
What a beautiful day! Ten volunteers came out and got some exercise on one of the best weather days of the year. The volunteers removed 18 large bags of trash, a tire tread, sheet metal and cardboard. Jill, Jim and Kim, I am sorry I missed you for the picture, thank you for your hard work supporting our community.
I want to express my sincere thanks to all the volunteers that show up for KCCB events. You are truly making a difference. If you have not volunteered in a while, or have never volunteered, I hope you will come out and support KCCB at our next event.
Please stop throwing trash from vehicles and cover your load. It is not just the right thing to do it is the law.
Keep Carter County Beautiful and Elizabethton Parks and Recreation Wild Flower planting on the Linear and Tweetsie Trail
Keep Carter County Beautiful and Elizabethton Parks and Recreation are planting wild flowers to attract humming birds, pollinators and people to our beautiful trails. In doing so they are making our Linear and Tweetsie Trails a great place to take a walk, run or bike ride. Hope to see you enjoying the flowers on the trails this summer. Have fun!
Many thanks to Mike Mains and the hard working people at Elizabethton Parks and Recreation. Mike’s crew got their rototiller out and plowed up several areas along the Linear and Tweetsie Trails. Thank you to the volunteers who came out on a Thursday and Friday night and stayed until dark raking out the plots and planting wild flowers. I cannot wait until the flowers start blooming again this year.
Keep Carter County Beautiful – TDOT Adopt-A-Highway Spring cleanup of Milligan Highway was a great success!!
It was hot out there for a Saturday in May. Fourteen volunteers came out and got some excercise and picked up 13 bags of trash, one tire, some sheet metal, and styrofoam. Thank you to the new volunteers who helped and thank you again to the volunteers that show up time after time. Without our great volunteers we could not have the positive impact we are having. If it is not my imagination Milligan Highway seems to be staying cleaner. Lets hope our message is getting out there. A special thanks to Chief Shaw of the Elizabethton Police Department and the Officer that made sure our cleanup was safe again this year. Thank you to Mayor Patty Woodby for her continued support. KCCB is better because of the support of our community leaders. Thank you to TDOT for picking up the collected trash, great to have the help.
Keep Carter County Beautiful delivers Wayfinding Signs to Carter County
On May 10th, Keep Carter County Beautiful delivered Wayfinding signs to the Carter County Road Commission and Roan Mountain Parks. The signs were designed and manufactured with a grant provided to Carter County. The signs will enhance tourism and assist in directional wayfinding in our County. The signs identify special interest locations, parks, cities, recreation activities, natural attractions, and provide informational messages.
Keep Carter County Beautiful Vice-President Ross Garland spearheaded the grant and facilitated the creation of the signs. Ross worked with Seth Hice (Elizabethton Carter County Chamber of Commerce Tourism) to design the location maps and identify many of the County’s parks, recreational features, and points of interest. The signs identify places like the Tweetsie Trail, Blue Hole Falls, Gap Creek Park, Elizabethton Covered Bridge, Hampton Watershed Trails, Hersel Julian Landing, Green Bridge Landing, and the Eric C. Anderson Community Park. Six signs show the entire county with all the areas of interest marked. Additionally, signage for hiking trails, fishing, rafting, and litter prevention were created.
The signs are to be placed throughout Carter County in the coming months. Residents and visitors will soon be able to use these directional signs to identify our county’s treasures.
Thank you Ross for all your hard work, the signs are beautiful and will be helpful to all who live in and visit our beautiful Carter County. Seth Hice of the Elizabethton Carter County Chamber of Commerce was instrumental in designing the signs. Thank you Seth.
Keep Carter County Beautiful and Keep America Beautiful Great American Tweetsie Trail Earth Day Cleanup
The weather was so good that only the most dedicated volunteers would show up on the Tweetsie Trail to pickup trash. Nine wonderful volunteers removed 18 large bags of trash while everyone around them enjoyed biking, walking or running. Please treat the Tweetsie Trail and all those that use it with respect and remove your litter when you are done. Help make the Tweetsie enjoyable for all. Thank you to these terrific volunteers.
Keep Carter County Beautiful – Elizabethton Parks & Recreation Spring Tree Planting Event
The vision is to plant trees along the Tweetsie Trail from one end of Elizabethton to the other. Trees that will provide beautiful blossoms in Spring, shade in Summer and colorful foliage in Fall. To make this vision a reality you need leadership, resources, and energy. For the past 4 years Ed Jordan of Keep Carter County Beautiful and Mike Mains of Elizabethton Parks and Recreation have been providing the leadership while the Elizabethton City Council and Carter County Commission have been providing the resources. The people of Northeast Tennessee have been providing the energy and labor.
It started with four trees in 2019. Then fifteen more were planted in 2020. How do you top that? You plant thirty-four trees in 2021. This year (2022) Keep Carter County Beautiful and Elizabethton Parks and Recreation asked for volunteers to help plant thirty trees. Nineteen energetic volunteers came out and spent their Saturday morning getting all thirty trees planted and mulched. The volunteers had to remove numerous rocks from the base of the trees, backfill the holes and spread the mulch. Now everyone who walks, runs, or bikes the Tweetsie in Elizabethton will be able to watch the trees grow. Our hope is that ten years from now the trees planted will bring visitors from all around the country.
Thank you to this year’s volunteers and all past and future volunteers that are working to make this vision a reality. Thank you to Ed Jordan and Mike Mains for their leadership and thank you to the Carter County Commissioners and Elizabethton City Council for the resources required to make this happen. If you recognize someone in the pictures below, tell them thank you and maybe think about volunteering next year. You will be able to see your hard work spring to life each year and have bragging rights with everyone you know.
Love when the whole community unites to help
A special thank you to the Elizabethton Fire Department for keeping the new trees planted on the Tweetsie Trail watered until Mother Nature can take over. A special thank you to Mike Mains, Director of Parks and Recreation, and his team for all the help they provide with KCCB’s projects. We could not do this without their help.
Keep Carter County Beautiful and Keep the Tennessee River Beautiful cleanup of Watauga Lake a great success!
When Kathleen Gibi, Executive Director of Keep the Tennessee River Beautiful organized the 2nd Annual Four-Part Cherokee National Forest River Cleanup Series, she knew she could count on assistance from Keep Carter County Beautiful. Eleven hard working volunteers showed up, put on life jackets and water boots, and went to work. The volunteers spent their Saturday removing trash from five different sites on Watauga Lake including the Little Milligan Boat ramp and four areas of rugged shoreline. One of the volunteers joining the cleanup was Ashley Cavender of Keep Jonesborough Beautiful. Ashley is working hard to keep Jonesborough a great place to live and visit.
When quitting time came, Kathleen ferried the exhausted volunteers back to the boat ramp. She and Isaac Christman then returned to the cleanup sites and loaded the trash into the boat and ferried it back to the dumpster. Several hundred pounds of Styrofoam dock floats, 23 tires (21 on rims) and 50+ bags of trash were removed by this fantastic volunteer crew. The dumpster was so full the tires and two Styrofoam floats that weighed approximately 300 lbs. each would not fit.
A special thanks to Benny Lyons, Carter Counties Solid Waste Manger for supplying the dumpster. Without a method to remove the trash collected, Keep Carter County Beautiful’s events would not be as successful as they are. When Benny found out the tires and Styrofoam would not fit in the dumpster, he came to the rescue again, the tires and Styrofoam were removed along with the full dumpster.
I don’t know what motivates volunteers like these, but I hope to see them again at community cleanup events throughout the year. Please keep an eye out for future events by visiting:
Keep Carter County Beautiful’s Adopt-A-Highway Milligan Highway Winter Cleanup
On Saturday, February 12, 2022, after a two-week delay because of snow, Keep Carter County Beautiful volunteers got together to remove the litter and trash deposited over the winter on our adopted Milligan Highway. Sixteen volunteers displayed their commitment to making Carter County a beautiful place to work and live. Mayor Woodby, Commissioners Ginger Holdren and Ross Garland, Elizabethton City Councilman Mike Simerly, Sheriff candidate Thomas Smith, and one very good puppy dog worked side by side with volunteers picking up trash.
Thirty-One bags of trash and a tire were removed from the shoulder and ravines along the roadway from Highway 321 to Okolona Road. Hard to believe that this same section of road was just cleaned up in November 2021. To all the volunteers that worked this event, thank you. I know many in the community appreciate your hard work and dedication. Thank you TDOT for the supplies, support and picking up the bagged trash. A special thank you to Elizabethton Police Chief Shaw for providing extra patrols to make sure everyone was safe. I would also like to thank the neighbor that got us energized with candy. Treats always makes the work sweeter. This was a TDOT Adopt-A-Highway event.
I would like to appeal to everyone who drives our county roads, please do not throw trash out your window. If we dispose of trash properly, there would be no need to have this cleanup 3-4 times per year. Working together we can solve this littering problem.
Please don’t litter, you are damaging the entire community.
Cover your load, it’s the law!
Every year thousands of motorists are injured or killed on our highways. Even under the best of conditions, driving can be hazardous. Add bad weather or poor road maintenance to the equation and it can be downright dangerous just to go out. One factor that increases the risk associated with driving is road debris. Anyone who has had to swerve to avoid an object in the road understands the danger.
I was driving along Highway 321 at the I-26 interchange this week, when I noticed two pickup trucks loaded with what appeared to be construction debris. The lead pickup was pulling a trailer loaded with scrap wood. Plywood was used to keep the debris from falling off the sides of the trailer and two straps were the only thing keeping the entire load from sliding off the back. The second pickup had the bed piled high with debris, with no apparent method of securing it.
Just as I was commenting to the passengers in my vehicle about how unsafe the loads appeared to be, debris came flying off one of them and landed right in front of me. Fortunately, I had enough room in front of my vehicle and was able to change lanes to avoid the debris. I was not sure that the vehicles behind me were able to avoid the hazard.
Safety is not the only issue with vehicles like these. Highway 321, between Johnson City and Elizabethton, is full of trash that flies off vehicles. Tennessee spends over 18 million dollars every year to remove litter and debris from our roads and waterways. Don’t you think there are more important things we could spend this money on? Don’t you think that our beautiful mountains and wildlife deserve a break from our apathy? Please be smart and start thinking about the impact you have on your surroundings every day.
Tennessee State Law requires: “Any motor vehicle that transports litter or any material likely to fall or be blown off onto the highways, shall be required to have such material either in an enclosed space or fully covered by a tarpaulin.” Were you aware that this includes Pickup Trucks? You should also know that violating this law is punishable by up to six months in jail, a fine of up to $1,500, or both. If you see a situation like I describe above, please report them to The Tennessee Department of Transportation at:
Covered Load Tarp Give-A-Way at Carter County Landfill – Great support from our Community Leaders. The community working to make things better!
Were you aware that Tennessee State Law requires: “Any motor vehicle that transports litter or any material likely to fall or be blown off onto the highways, shall be required to have such material either in an enclosed space or fully covered by a tarpaulin. “
One of the reasons Carter County Tennessee continues to be a beautiful place to live, and work is the support of our Community Leaders. Community leaders came together at a Tarp Give-A-Way event at the Carter County Landfill. The event included information on Tennessee State Law for transporting litter and debris and a free tarp.
Carter County Mayor Patty Woodby, Carter County Commissioner Ross Garland, Keep Tennessee Beautiful Director Missy Marshall, Keep Carter County Beautiful Ed Jordan, Carter County Sheriff Dexter Lunceford, State Trooper Rick Garrison, City of Elizabethton Chief of Police Jason Shaw and Carter County Solid Waste Director Benny Lyons were in attendance to support the event.