Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

Volunteers sought over next two weekends to continue to cleanup Peekskill

Main Street & McGregory Brook Cleanup via Peekskill Clean Routine, RiverKeeeper’s Annsville Park & Creek Cleanup, and a Native Plant Sale all in the works
Peekskill Clean Routine on March 2, 2024 after cleaning up Lower South Street between Requa and Old Bay Street Photo Credit: Peekskill Clean Routine Facebook Page

“Earth Day” may be over, but caring for Planet Earth is never over. There are so many simple things that people can do on a daily basis that can help keep the Earth, and Peekskill, cared for. 

Last week, the Annual Peekskill Parks Cleanup Day had volunteers from all over clean up Peekskill Parks. However, the cleanup never ends. This week, the Peekskill Herald brings to our readers three more local cleanup efforts to help make Peekskill, the surrounding communities and the Earth a better place to live. Remember: “Think Globally, Act Locally.”

Saturday, April 27

This Saturday, April 27, from 10:00 am to 12:00 Noon, the #PeekskillCleanRoutine Team will be conducting a cleanup starting at the Main Street entrance of Tompkins Park near the old Lapolla Little League Fields, and picking up trash and garbage all along the Main Street corridor. You do not need much to help with the cleanup but your time, a little bit of love for the Earth, and maybe a pair of gloves.  If you have a garbage picker you would like to bring along, that is a plus. If you don’t have gloves, do not fret, the cleanup group has plenty, as well as bags and water that were donated. Leslie Lawler, the group’s founder said, “if enough people participate, volunteers may also continue down Park Street along McGregory Brook and even possibly down to Central Avenue.” 

Another founding member, Gene Panczenko, will be getting a little dirtier and wetter during the cleanup when he will enter McGregory Brook behind Auto Zone and Family Dollar and digging out old shopping carts, car tires, and other trash from the brook. He said, “I am looking for some help from several strong people to haul the shopping carts out of the water.” He said, “we could also use some gardeners with loppers to prune back the vines.” If you have some strong arms, and are down with maybe getting a little wet, maybe grab some waders or some rubber boots and give him, and the brook a hand.  If you help him, you may even get to see one of Peekskill biggest hidden treasures: a magical waterfall. 

Shopping carts litter McGregory Brook behind Family Dollar and Autozone on Main Street.
Photo Credit: Gene Panczenko

Lawler mentions, “we had a great turnout at the March cleanup of Lower South Street and the PCR volunteers truly put their heart and soul into every cleanup, leaving each area completely transformed.” 

In January, after the Hudson River overflowed its banks past the Gazebo and to the edges of the playground, the Peekskill Clean Routine set up a Community Cleanup. The Peekskill Herald helped get the word out and profiled the Peekskill Clean Routine in the article “Join #PeekskillCleanRoutine and help clean up the Riverfront Green.

Peekskill Herald photographer Chloe Trieff followed up by taking pictures of the cleanup in action where close to 80 volunteers gathered, shattering cleanup records. During the two hour event, 125 bags of debris and garbage were collected on Saturday, January 27, 2024


Saturday, May 4

The 13th Annual Riverkeeper Sweep cleanup of the Annsville Park Preserve and Creek on land and on kayak will happen the following Saturday, May 4th.

Annsville Park Preserve Cleanup on Land

Join Vincent Arcery and Rev. Lane Cobb along with the Fourth Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Westchester, RiverKeeper, and local clean water advocates on May 4th, for a cleanup of Annsville Preserve Park from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm

Volunteers will meet in the parking lot of the Annsville Park Preserve in Peekskill. The park is located at the very north end of the Peekskill waterfront past the Jan Peek House on Water Street. If you would like to volunteer, drive or walk past the Jan Peek House, at the end of the road you will see black iron gates and a sign that says Annsville Park Preserve. Drive slowly or walk through the gates, all the way down the long narrow gravel road that runs adjacent to the railroad tracks until the road ends. At the end of the road, there will be a small parking lot for about 20 cars. Register for this event via this eventbrite link.

Riverkeeper recommends volunteers to bring a hat, sunscreen, a full reusable water bottle, insect repellent and hand sanitizer. Bring work gloves and if you have a grabber/picker tool, please bring one or more. The event will happen rain or shine and is suitable for elementary-aged children with adult supervision.
If you have any questions, contact Riverkeeper at [email protected], Sweep Leader Andrew Fischer at [email protected] or call Andrew at 914-227-4981. You can also contact United Universalist ‘s Vincent Arcery at 914-519-6151 or 516-547-0330.

Annsville Creek cleanup by kayak

Hudson River Expeditions will host a Cleanup of Annsville Creek by kayak from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm on May 4 as reported by Peekskill Herald reporter Jim Roberts, in the weekly “What’s Happening” column, on April 22. 

Kayaks will be provided or you can bring your own kayaks, paddles, and PFDs. Volunteers must be experienced paddlers.  This particular cleanup is not suitable for elementary-aged children, but the cleanup of the Annsville Park Preserve is.

Volunteers will meet at Annsville PaddleSport Center, in the parking lot located just after the Annsville Circle. Riverkeeper recommends volunteers bring a hat, sunscreen, a full reusable water bottle, insect repellent, work gloves, and hand sanitizer. They also recommend wearing non-cotton, quick-drying layers, appropriate for the weather and cold water, as well as waterproof footwear. Volunteers should bring a change of clothes in case it is needed.

If you have questions about this kayak cleanup, contact Riverkeeper at [email protected] or Brian Grahn at [email protected] or call Brian at 914-490-9023. Register for the event here

Video credit: @hudsonriverkeeper on Youtube


A Native Plant Sale at Westchester Community College Saturday April 27

For those who are looking for a way to beautify their gardens and landscaping, planting native New York State plants is a great way to do it. On Saturday, April 27th from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, at Westchester Community College, the 25th annual Native Plant Center’s Native Plant Sale will be set up on the field between Parking Lot #1 and the Administration Building.

There, gardeners will find a great mix of native plants in sizes to suit all garden needs. Since the sale launched in 1999, tens of thousands of native plants have found homes in area gardens and landscapes, supporting wildlife and providing ecological benefits to the community. For more information, contact [email protected].


Think Globally, Act Locally

There are so many things our readers can do to help save the Earth and make the Planet, Peekskill, and our surrounding communities a much better place to live. 

Some basic things you can do on a daily basis to help the environment is throw out garbage properly in waste receptacles, reduce, reuse, and recycle, volunteer for cleanups days, conserve water – don’t run it endlessly for no reason, choose sustainable products when shopping and when buying groceries, switch old lights to energy efficient light bulbs and turn off the lights when leaving the room, know what you want from the refrigerator and freezer before opening it to conserve energy and keep the cold air inside, plant a tree and buy native plants for your gardens and landscapes, try to make more trips by walking, biking or taking public transit by using your car less. Remember “think global, act local.”

Visit the Peekskill Herald Events Calendar Features  and the Peekskill Herald Event Calendar to see more local events.

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About the Contributor
Dave Mueller
As a Peekskill native, Dave is thrilled to be working with the Peekskill Herald showcasing featured calendar events. A 1999 graduate of PHS, he remembers reading and enjoying the original weekly print edition of the Peekskill Herald every Thursday. He especially liked the political stories, local features and sports coverage when it was written by Peekskill Runner columnist Jack Burns who always managed to weave history into the running times. An avid hiker, he enjoys exploring the local trails as well as the concrete ones in his job as a conductor for Metro North Railroad. He’s a former teacher and co-founder of the Friends of the Peekskill Dog Park, where he frequently can be found with his Koda. He’s happy to be part of the Herald’s growth as the source of local news for Peekskill and looks forward to highlighting a few of many of the events and happenings in Peekskill and the surrounding communities. Reach Dave at [email protected]