MOUNT VERNON — About 25 volunteers gathered Saturday morning at the Knox County Fairgrounds to help spruce up the fairgrounds before the upcoming Knox County Fair.
Most were with the Mount Vernon Municipal Court and Knox County Common Pleas Court probation programs, but some community volunteers also showed up to help paint windows and doors on several buildings, stretches of railing and the entire exterior of the Flower Exhibit Building.
Under the supervision of Probation Officer Dave Priest of Municipal Court, Adam Taylor from Common Pleas Court, County Recycling and Litter Prevention Officer Randy Canterbury, who is also executive director of Keep Knox County Beautiful, and Emily Marth, Safety/Loss Control director for the county, the crews went to work with paint and supplies provided through a grant obtained from Keep America Beautiful and Sherwin-Williams Paint Co.
“We had more volunteers than we expected. We had to scramble to find enough equipment for everyone,” Marth said.
Most of the volunteers were from the probation departments working to help defray court costs (they’re credited at the minimum wage rates) and complete community service requirements.
Priest said projects like this have been great for both the probationers and the community. Priest’s volunteer crews have frequently done work at Ariel-Foundation Park and in the downtown area.
“These projects are a great opportunity to work off court costs,” Taylor said.
But community volunteers also showed up.