MMAC Volunteers Rocked LITTERBLITZ 2023!
Vol.9 Issue 3
LitterBlitz 2023

April is LitterBlitz month in Oklahoma City! It takes a community to keep our city clean, and once again, volunteers from the Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center (MMAC) devoted their Saturday morning by collecting nearly 80 large trash bags of litter from roadsides nearby.

Thanks to Oklahoma City Beautiful, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, volunteers were able to give back and connect with friends, neighbors, civic clubs, and coworkers as well as the environment in a safe and easy way.

Volunteers collect litter in front of the FAA Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center

Each year, thousands of Oklahoma City residents work together to help pick up litter throughout the Oklahoma City metro area, collecting tons of trash from our streets. Despite temperatures in the low 50’s and winds over 25 mph, employees with their families and friends came prepared to clean up nearby areas from 9am-Noon on Saturday, April 15th, 2023.

Volunteers could choose from three designated areas near the Center to collect litter: SW 54th and MacArthur Blvd. to the MMAC’s West Gate; from the MMAC’s West gate to SW 74th and MacArthur Blvd.; and from the South gate of MMAC to SW 89th Street and MacArthur Blvd.

Volunteers for LitterBlitz 2023 put on bright colored vests while receiving the initial safety briefing

Supplies were provided by OKC Beautiful (rubber gloves, trash bags and bright yellow safety vests). Bryan Dahlvang provided oversight of MMAC’s participation in the program, and he kicked off the 2023 event with a safety briefing.

Within a few hours, almost 80 large garbage bags were collected and brought to a centralized location for the city to pick up. One volunteer noted that it pays to participate in LitterBlitz, because he found a twenty-dollar bill!

Javier Cruz, FAA Academy Instructor (AMA-250), found "everything but the kitchen sink." Actually, he found a bathroom sink. Cruz says, "I look forward to next time. Maybe I’ll find a bathtub!" Special thanks to him for going the extra mile, hauling most of the trash bags with his truck to the main pile near SW 89th and MacArthur Boulevard.

Aaron Thacker, Program Manager for the FAA Logistics Center’s Technical Programs and Support Team (AJW-L830) brought his daughter and said, "We had a great time, and this was for a good cause!" While participating in LitterBlitz, they found a Rain Bird sprinkler screwdriver and a pair of pliers among other debris.

Dawrenda Cooper, Budget Analyst (AJW-2210), (who personally invited the Western Heights High School JROTC program to help with LitterBlitz a few years ago), loves participating in the program. "I enjoy helping clean up Oklahoma," she said. "We could not believe the number of nails, screws and metal pieces that were found along the curb-line. Next year, we will bring a magnet to help keep people from getting flat tires."

Michelle Coppedge, Director of the FAA Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center states, "MMAC’s LitterBlitz brought together dozens of volunteers with a common goal – keeping our city beautiful! On behalf of the FAA, I’d like to express my sincere gratitude to the employees, students and volunteers for making this a huge success."

Though the wind was high and the temperature was not as comfortable as it could have been, the event went well, and attitudes from kind people with servant-hearts warmed the entire area.

Volunteers Craig Fishbein, Aaron Thacker and his daughter look for trash near a radome in front of the FAA Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center
Many hands make for light work during LitterBlitz 2023

Walking south on MacArthur Boulevard, volunteers enjoy the challenge of removing trash from the side of the road
Susan Jay, a Physiologist from the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (AAM-631), returns for another refreshing walk along the roads near MMAC to find trash that doesn’t belong there
Eduardo Lima (left) and the Ryan Mounts family enjoy fresh air and exercise while collecting litter as a community service
Brian McBeth, Airway Transportation Systems Specialist (Instructor) of the FAA Academy and his wife Tammy make quite a haul
Pictured L-R, A friend of FAA, Wade Price, Reza Moradi and Laura Shepherd-Madsen had a great time meeting new people and saving taxpayer dollars by clearing debris from roadsides near MMAC
Javier Cruz, FAA Academy Instructor (AMA-250), holds up a small sink that he found in the ditch

LitterBlitz volunteers pose next to the pile of garbage bags collected, including a large (new) tire
Reza Moradi, Senior Computer Engineer (AJW-1411) enjoyed the exercise and the good cause of community service during LitterBlitz 2023
Dawrenda Cooper (pictured R) Budget Analyst (AJW-2210) helped guide Western Heights High School JROTC students as they performed community service
Geoffrey Johnson (left) stands with his group of Navy JROTC cadets from Western Heights High School
Federal Aviation Aministration (FAA) seal