Besides being a census year and a year of other interesting events, 2020 marks the 30th anniversary of the Minnesota Adopt-a-Highway Program. Statewide, more than 3,800 groups picked up 40,000 bags of trash from the sides of highways last year, according to an official at the state Department of Transportation.
Of those groups, 475 have been with the program for all 30 years.
In Dodge County, there are 16 groups that clean up sections of county roadways. New groups are always welcome. Those that would like to participate would agree to adopt a two-mile segment of roadway for a minimum of two years; members will pick up litter and debris along this segment twice each year; and members will wear safety vests during pick-up and observe all safety rules.
Participants then drop off the filled trash bags at the county Highway Department, 16 S. Airport Dr., Dodge Center, for disposal.
Members of the group are asked to notify the Highway Department (507-374-6694) if there are any large, heavy, or hazardous items along the roadway.
Highway Department staff will erect a highway sign at each end of the adopted segment to recognize the group’s cleanup efforts. The group’s volunteers will be provided with high-visibility vests, trash bags and safety information. The department will also dispose of filled bags dropped off at the highway department and department staff will remove large, heavy, or hazardous items from the roadway.
In Dodge County, participating groups are the Berne Church; Blooms of Love, LLC; the Byron Sportsmen and Conservation Club; the Claremont Chamber of Commerce; the Dodge County Wildcat Hockey Boys Hockey; the family of Nancy Alrick; the family and friends of Adam Johnson; the Gilliland family; Gulbranson Oil, Kasson-Mantorville Lions Club; the Ness Family; the Papenfus Family; Paulette Elke; and the Predmore Family.If your group is interested in adopting a portion of a roadway in the county, an application form is available on the website at www.co.dodge.mn.us/Highway/AdoptAHighwayApp.pdf or a printed copy can be obtained at the Highway Department.