News Flash

Marketing & Communications

Posted on: September 10, 2021

Roots Day Canceled; Modified Big Sweep Still Scheduled

Community Roots Day

Community Roots Day, the annual tree-planting event coordinated by the Community Appearance Commission, Keep Winston-Salem Beautiful and the Winston-Salem Vegetation Management Department, is being canceled this year due to the resurgence of COVID-19. The event had been scheduled for Oct. 16.

Big Sweep, the annual clean-up of local waterways, is still scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 2, from 9 a.m. to noon. Sign-ups are being accepted at CityofWS.org/KWSB through Sept. 24 with modified provisions for participation:

  • Only groups of 25 or less will be allowed to participate, and only one group will be allowed at any given location.
  • All participants must wear masks and gloves, which will be provided, and maintain social distance. Hand sanitizer must be used after removing gloves.
  • All participants must sign a waiver.
  • Instead of pizza and soda, pre-packaged snacks and bottled water will be provided.

Big Sweep is organized by Keep Winston-Salem Beautiful. Executive Director George Stilphen said the modifications make it feasible to hold Big Sweep despite the pandemic. “We’ll be outdoors and it’s easy for people to spread out along a stream and maintain social distance,” he said.

In contrast, Roots Day requires people to work in teams, said Amy Crum of the Community Appearance Commission. “When planting the trees, it usually requires 3 to 5 volunteers working together in close proximity,” Crum said. “Given the nature of the activity, there is not a viable option to provide social distancing during the event.” 

Organizers will wait until next summer before they determine whether to schedule a Community Roots Day next fall, Crum said.

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