By Brenda Duke

*Photo credits Jeff DeBruyn-Smith, Barclay Publications

Ten years ago, a small group came together and said, ‘Let’s Pick it Up’. On October 1st, 2022, that group has grown to almost 600 members dedicated to the on- going stewardship of their public spaces. The turnout was smaller for the fall clean up, but the need was just as big. Our teams across the city included those in Durand, Kirkendaal, Gibson, Landsdale, Crown Point West, St Clair and Stinson and Corktown who worked with our partners at CP Rail. On October 22nd, we will once again partner with CN Rail to clean up along the rail from Cheever to Wentworth, working toward Birch Avenue.

Those that didn’t come out are the ones who take ownership of their spaces throughout the year. We have almost 200 alleys ‘adopted’ by residents who pick up, report, and beautify their alleys and greenspaces. There is a noticeable increase in the number of companies and organizations that have followed our lead and held cleanups. The more the word spreads, the better we can fight for cleaner, safer, and healthier communities.

On October 1st, our teams numbered upwards of 100 people of all ages and that group picked up close to 4 tons of garbage and illegal dumping. Volunteers offered to transport their collected garbage to the bins we provided.

Beautiful Alleys will continue to support these dedicated volunteers with supplies provided by Keep Hamilton Clean and Green, and we will continue to work together until the need is gone. Visit our website or join our Facebook group Beautiful Alleys | Facebook to find out how you can help. We welcome your ideas, concerns and input by email at