Columbus is giving people such as Julie Hallan additional ammunition to fight litter.

Columbus is giving people such as Julie Hallan additional ammunition to fight litter.

Keep Columbus Beautiful is launching Three Words About Litter: PICK IT UP!, the first communitywide litter campaign, on Sept. 7.

Hallan already is on board. The volunteer coordinator for Friends of Goodale Park has one cleanup event each at the park and Dennison Place and two in Italian Village.

As the year moves forward and more people visit the Short North, trash becomes more noticeable, Hallan said.

"I think we should have a litter event every year at this time of year," she said. "Goodale Park is pretty bad right now,"

Sherri Palmer, program manager for Keep Columbus Beautiful, said the effort is designed to get everyone involved, from school children to people in the business community.

"Litter is the first signal that a neighborhood may be declining, and that leads to crime," Palmer said.

"Unfortunately people just walk by it. But we'd like them to recognize that if people just pick up a piece of litter, it would make for a cleaner city."

She said everyone from individuals to large groups can hit streets Sept. 7 and join the effort, which also will include outreach to schools and businesses.

"Make it simple on yourselves," she said. "Get some friends together, get some trash bags, put on some gloves and go out and pick up litter."

Trash bags can be thrown away at clearly marked city-owned trash bins, in 300-gallon trash cans in many alleys and in home trash containers.

The city and volunteers have made litter control a priority, Palmer said.

In 2012, Keep Columbus Beautiful recorded 438 cleanups, involving 8,995 volunteers, equaling 28,393 volunteer hours. The group is known for its annual Kick Butt Columbus campaign every spring, in which volunteers remove cigarette butts from public spaces.

Keep Columbus Beautiful has limited supplies for larger groups looking to join the latest effort. Those who need materials are asked to call 614-645-2421.

For more information, visit the website