Community beautification has been a springtime staple in the Madison community for 20 years. Through the annual May Day volunteer effort, Rose City residents, public officials and organizations come together to participate in volunteer projects that keep their town pristine. 

Held on May 5, this year’s effort brought out more than 800 of these volunteers, who laid mulch, cleaned up garbage, pulled out weeds and much more as they donned t-shirts designed by Central Avenue School student Michael Turano, winner of the annual May Day t-shirt contest.

There were a few familiar faces among the hundreds of participants, including Mayor Bob Conley, who weeded and mulched the train station and surrounding area with help from fellow council members Patrick Rowe and Astri Baillie and Madison Area Chamber of Commerce executive director Karen Giambra.

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Cub Scout Troop 7 cleaned up James Park between Madison Avenue and Park Avenue, returning there for a second year. 

These were just a few of more than 50 beautification efforts going on around town last weekend. 

May Day brings unique volunteer opportunities for all ages. Small children can be found working side-by side with borough council members while employees from the Department of Public Works move mountains of mulch. Local university students help service club members beautify the Madison Train Station. Senior citizens may be found delivering water to thirsty volunteers or mulching in the parks.

Approximately 200 volunteers participated in the first May Day 20 years ago. In recent years, that number has grown exponentially over time. Now, approximately 800 volunteers are involved with cleanup projects at more than 50 work sites.

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