Marci Whitford gets more out of walking her dog than just a happy dog.

It pays to pick

Highlighting some of the super-inspiring people in the community who help us all out by cleaning up after us.

It pays to pick – pick bottles that is.

And cans.

Given April is home to Pitch-In Week, and as the snow recedes an unbelievable amount of garbage becomes visible, having accumulated from the winter months, I thought I might take the chance to highlight some of the super-inspiring people in the community who help us all out by cleaning up after us.

Del and Marci Whitford are one couple who do just that, and while they are doing us a service, their service has also paid off.

Marci Whitford said she was inspired by some others in the community (who I hope to highlight as well in a future edition) when she found out how much they had saved up, simply by picking up bottles and cans.

So, she and her husband Del, who walk their dog every day, decided to begin collecting, and would pick up about a grocery bag of returnable containers on each and every walk and gave herself an end goal.

She decided “it’d be fun to collect enough for a kayak – just to see if I could do it,” she said. “This was sort of like an experiment.”

She was so enthusiastic for her experiment she had to ease up when a friend she would go biking with told her she was going to stop riding with her if they had to keep stopping to pick up cans and bottles. Marci said she would end up with more than she could carry on her bike on some outings, and would be teetering down the road with bags hanging off of her bicycle.

Was the experiment successful?

Well, after less than a year, the couple had managed to earn themselves $600 towards their goal, and on Kijiji they found two used kayaks for this amount, reaching twice the goal she set out for, and this summer they will be able to enjoy the rewards of their labour together.

“That was just so exciting,” she said.

Managing to purchase two kayaks was an overachievement, and impressive given they walk through town about 40 minutes at a time with their dog, and yet can still get some returnables nearly every time.

“I can’t believe the bottles and cans that are thrown out everyday,” she said.

So, with Pitch-In week in mind, maybe don’t just walk on by that can or bottle.

Instead, pick it up and sooner than you might think you could treat yourself to something truly worth your while.


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