Blog, Media > Editorial from The Chamber chair in Northern Nevada Business Weekly

Hidden Valley - Before

Hidden Valley – Before

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What’s a community’s appearance worth?
by Tim Ruffin
… As board chair of The Chamber, I know our city’s appearance is one of the first things a visitor notices when they arrive in the Truckee Meadows. I also agree with Mike Kazmierski, president and chief executive of the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada, that the impression that our prospective businesses have of Reno/Sparks depends upon a community-wide, concentrated effort to keep our region attractive. If it’s so important to our community’s economic development as well as our own quality of life, what can we do to make it happen? Sure, we can each individually pick up our own trash or take advantage of organized legal dumping events to dispose of larger items, but what about our open spaces which are often abused by illegal dumping? How can we clean these up and try to prevent future illegal dumping there?

Hidden Valley - After

Hidden Valley – After

That’s where Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful and its dedicated group of volunteer supporters come in. Since this local non-profit began organizing the annual Great Community Cleanup in 2006 tons of trash has been removed from open spaces around our community! In just one morning last year, 573 volunteers and 25 companies removed tons of trash (including old tires, appliances and furniture) from 18 pristine spots like Hidden Valley, Eagle Canyon, Red Hill, and the Oxbow Nature Study Area. The results are impressive, and the pictures tell the story. But what may be less obvious are other benefits from this community-wide effort. After a morning of working together as neighbors and co-workers, volunteers gather for a celebratory lunch. Stories are swapped, passions are shared, and new friendships are made. Participating companies experience greater team building than they would at pricey, day-long retreats. Volunteers benefit, sponsoring companies benefit and, ultimately, our community benefits. …

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