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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

City cleanup crew will follow parade floats

The last trucks to go by in the Homecoming parade Nov. 2 won't be part of the entertainment. They'll be filled with city employees to clean up the mess.

"The parade's not over until our trucks go by," said Gina Hawkins, a public education specialist with Gainesville's Public Works Department.

The trucks usually consist of two street sweepers and a large vacuum, said Steve Joplin, interim director of the solid waste division.

Twenty to 30 people usually participate, he said.

The cleanup crew comes mostly from Public Works and the Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs departments.

Hawkins said it takes them about three hours to get all the way down University Avenue.

They pick up litter and empty trash containers on both sides of the street, but they don't cross far into UF territory.

The same employees also clean up before and after football games and other major events in Gainesville.

"They've gotten plenty of practice with these championship wins," Hawkins said.

The crew usually cleans up bottles and household-type trash.

The arrangement is part of a deal with UF, which in turn contributes monetarily to the city, Hawkins said.

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