READING, Pa. — As part of the Great American Cleanup, Penn State Berks students and children in the city of Reading will gather in Northwest Reading to clean up Baer Park and a 1-mile section of the Schuylkill River Trail, from the River Road trail head across from Baer Park to the Buttonwood Street Bridge. The cleanup will take place from 4 to 6 p.m. on March 31.
This event is part of an ongoing collaborative effort between the Penn State Berks Center for Service Learning and Community-Based Research, the city of Reading, the Olivet Boys and Girls Club, and the Friends of the Schuylkill River Trail Community Park in Northwest Reading to revitalize and maintain parks and to create a community park along the Schuylkill River Trail in Northwest Reading. The goal is to turn this 1-mile section of the trail into a safe green space for the Reading community.
The project began in the spring of 2015 and has continued with much enthusiasm. This cleanup event is a follow-up to last spring’s “Great American Cleanup” on the same section of the trail, and a fall cleanup of Baer Park.
Students in six Penn State Berks courses are conducting research and leading media campaigns to inform these efforts. The March 31 cleanup will be followed by a Family Nature Festival on from 4 to 6:30 p.m. April 28 on the Schuylkill River Trail in Northwest Reading.
About the Center for Service Learning and Community-Based Research
The Penn State Berks Center for Service Learning and Community-Based Research supports faculty who involve their students and community partners in collaborative, impactful work. Service learning and community-based research are two instructional strategies that contribute to community well-being and simultaneously enrich students’ course learning. Since its founding in 2010, the center has facilitated nearly 40 academically grounded college-community partnerships. Going beyond conventional concepts of public service that emphasize a one-way process in which the university transfers its expertise to the community, service learning and community-based research is a commitment to sharing and reciprocity, partnerships, and two-way streets defined by mutual respect among the partners for what each brings to the table.
About the Schuylkill River Trail
With 60 miles of completed trail, the Schuylkill River Trail stretches portions of trail from Pottsville to Philadelphia. The trail is used for biking, hiking and other outdoor activities. Trail users can also utilize the river for fishing, kayaking and boating.
For additional information, contact event coordinator Michelle Hnath, program assistant in the Center for Service Learning and Community-Based Research, at 610-914-7595 or firstname.lastname@example.org.