Braddock Middle School Students Cleanup Canal Place

(Photo courtesy of Steven Leyh)

Canal Place and Riverside Park received a facelift on Thursday, October 23 at the hands of eighth grade students from Braddock Middle School.

The students planted 36 trees along the trestle walk and canal basin under the supervision of Paul Erickson, Natural Resource Specialist for City of Cumberland and staff from the Department Natural Resources. The trees will act as a natural screen for both sound and visual obstructions as well as provide beautification and stormwater retention in the area.Almost 200 students got their hands dirty and cleaned up the grounds of Canal Place as part of their service learning project. The event was organized by Canal Place, City of Cumberland and Braddock Middle School.

Other projects included removing an expansive area of invasive Japanese knotweed, weeding & mulching flower beds, washing windows, raking leaves, removing skateboard scuffmarks, sweeping and scrubbing.

“When these students grow up, we want them to know that it’s important to give back to their community in any capacity that they can.” said, Dee Dee Richie, Canal Place Executive Director.

Canal Place Preservation and Development Authority is grateful for the assistance and thanks all of the eighth graders who accomplished so much work. They also would like to acknowledge Columbia Gas, Pepsi and Aircon Engineering for their donations to support the project. New trees were funded by MD DHCD Community Legacy Grant and planted with the assistance of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Staff including Becky Wilson, Western Regional Coordinator Urban and Community Forestry, Daniel Schumerth, Forester, and Francis Smith, Natural Resources Technician as well as community volunteers Mary Hubner, George Franklin and Janie DeHart.

Visitors to Canal Place say that the students’ work means a lot to them and makes for a more enjoyable experience.

Written by Steven Leyh, Downtown Cumberland Promotions Director