WHILE the rest of Australia gave their neighbourhood a spring clean on Sunday, only two Griffith residents donned their gloves and got to work.
As predicted, the Casella Wines Visy City to Lake fun run overshadowed the local Clean Up Australia Day effort.
Councillor Pat Cox flagged the clash weeks ago and requested the clean up be rescheduled, but nothing was done about it.
“From a Griffith point of view, Griffith’s Clean Up Australia Day on Sunday just didn’t happen,” Cr Cox said.
"It is unfortunate but not entirely unexpected – it’s just very disappointing.
“As I had said, the fun run overshadowed Clean Up Australia Day, which is a pity because it’s an important event in Griffith.
“Another disappointing thing is a council staff representative was there from 8am to 11am but no one turned up.”
Cr Cox said she would lobby council to consider holding the fun run and the clean up on different days next year to avoid another non-event. Fellow councillor Bill Lancaster approved the clash in the lead up because he didn’t believe Griffith could afford to miss out on valuable national advertising.
Cr Lancaster said the participation in Clean Up Australia Day was directly related to national publicity which he wasn’t willing to forego.
Fortunately the double-booking didn’t affect the efforts of Griffith’s school students who got their hands dirty for the good cause.
Griffith Public School principal Jude Hayman said every class went on the hunt for rubbish on Friday as part of Schools Clean Up Day.
“Each teacher took their class to different areas of the school and it went really well,” Ms Hayman said.
“It enhances the students’ awareness of the environment and looking after the place.”
“Fortunately we already have quite a tidy school which has been helped by new bins and our environmental group the Dirty Dozen.”
Locals can still take advantage of free rubbish disposal at one of council’s two landfills at Yenda and Tharbogang on the weekend.