Volunteers beautify city

Russell Anglin

Tucumcari’s weekend Great American Cleanup efforts were successful, city code enforcement officer and project coordinator for the Keep Tucumcari Beautiful project Kathy Estrada said.

“It was a successful venture. Anything we clean up to me is a successful venture. We ended up picking up … I had almost 30 trash bags,” Estrada said.

The week’s efforts began with Estrada planting flowers with Eastern Plains Headstart preschoolers on Wednesday and Thursday at City Hall.

On Saturday, one group of volunteers raked, picked up trash and put up new signs at the fitness center near the Quay Apartments. Another group cleaned up Dunn Park while a third group put a fresh coat of paint on a closed gas station near the Paradise Inn Motel west of town.

Estrada said she will be supervising a cleanup project near the end of the month where Tucumcari High School seniors pick up trash near the Elks Lodge.

“It’s one of the last things they do as the senior class in gratitude of what the Elks has done for them,” Estrada said.

Estrada is also looking to purchase paint and flowers to beautify Veterans Park on Main Street.

The all-volunteer gas station painting project was made possible by a $500 donation from Tucumcari MainStreet, according to Bob Beaulieu, who has helped coordinate the project.

“Our biggest enemy is funding for the paint,” Beaulieu said. He said Saturday’s project cost about $700 to fund and that he paid the remainder of the balance out of his pocket.

The long-term aspiration for the newly re-painted gas station is to find and investor to open a full-service gas station for tourists traveling in and out of town.

“They’ll check your tire pressure, check your oil. They could charge $2 over the normal rate because the tourists will love it,” Beaulieu said.

In the meantime, another two gas stations in town have been pinpointed for re-painting, Beaulieu said. The project is scheduled to continue throughout the summer. Persons interested in volunteering for the project can call the Tucumcari Chamber of Commerce at 575-461-1694.