That included removing some plants along the Barranca portion of the trail that had been trampled by kids cutting across a portion to take a shortcut to the high school, leveling the ground and spreading groundcover to make a path.
Water fountains and utility posts were cleaned and painted and other general maintenance tackled.
Overall, Nasalroad said, “Dianne (AIB founder) and Dudley Davis,” owners of DoRight’s Plant Nursery, “and our AIB group was very pleased with the results.”
Nasalroad said the path will be revisited by cleanup volunteers an effort that “Would warrant a good twice a year cleanup, maybe more. This one was the most detailed and difficult and once we get it all done it will be more easy on the maintenance side of it,” including for those organizations and individuals who have already adopted portions of the trail for monthly grooming.
This effort was more ambitious: “We made sure the deer grass near the intersections,” was thinned by the city prior to the event and now the trees that look like they need water or even appear dead will be examined to ensure there is no irrigation system failure.
Human failure will also be tackled: “We talked about putting up more signage to encourage people to pick up after their dogs,” as well as adding more plastic bag dispensaries and waste bins.
“I think we’ll also make an investment on an inventory, a reasonable number of hand cutters, shears and gloves,” for the youth that volunteered that did not have equipment.
Said Nasalroad, “If they’re going to be there to help us we will make sure we have the proper tools for them. I brought some of my own tools and they were well taken care of and returned to me at the end of the day. I’m sure whatever we purchased would be handled responsibly.”
Santa Paula High School drew volunteers from the Agricultural Science Academy and Future Farmers of America, AVID program, Human Services Academy, SESPEA Club and the Key Club and Nasalroad said elementary schools including Briggs also helped.
And at noon when the cleanup session ended and volunteers met back at the Gazebo, “We treated them to pizza, and with all those kids,” laughed Nasalroad, “it was a lot of pizza!” served with gratitude for a job well done.
The approximately $4 million trail was dedicated in February 2012.