Brandon Adams, a Dads of Castle Rock Executive Team drove to work every day on Highway 83. Every day he drove to work, the build-up of trash on either side of the road caught his attention. The Dads of Castle Rock has is known for fundraising and helping families and business’s in need, but one of the main tenants of the group is taking pride in the community.
I drive that road [Highway 83] every day, and I get so angry at how people can just dump their trash out the window. It’s disgusting. I’m very proud of where I live, and I love this community, but I’ve enough of allowing it to continue. I knew this problem was never going to get fixed until someone did something about it, so I decided to bring it up to the Executive Team.Brandon Adams, Dads of Castle Rock Grants Officer
In late 2020 at a closed board meeting, Brandon proposed to the Executive Team his desire for the Dads of Castle Rock to adopt the portion of Highway 86 he drove every day. Brandon received a unanimous yes vote from the Executive Team, and he immediately contacted the Colorado Department of Transportation to apply to adopt a four-mile stretch of Highway 83, two miles in either direction from Highway 86.
After five months of exchanging dozens of emails with the CDOT and ensuring all requirements were met, the first Dads of Castle Rock Adopt-a-Highway clean-up was held on May 8th, 2021, with two more clean-ups held over the summer months, each clean-up lasting approximately four hours.
The three clean-ups yielded 100 members of the Dads of Castle Rock, their families, and members of the Castle Rock community who volunteered to canvas 633,600 square feet of space adjacent to either side of Highway 86. The volunteers filled over 100 contractor trash bags with roadside trash, totaling the removal of over 2,000 pounds of trash.
The Adopt-a-Highway program has more benefits than keeping the side of the roadways aesthetically pleasing. A Dads of Castle Rock Adopt-a-Highway sign was placed on Highway 86 which is the only way to have a sign with the name of an organization on the side of any road. It’s a way people can take action to show pride in the community, and it sets an example for others in the community to follow.
In addition to having pride in the community, the Dads of Castle Rock has given high school kids the opportunity to fulfill mandatory community service hours for graduation and is an approved program for members of the community who are required to complete community service hours as ordered by the Douglas County courts.
The Adopt-a-Highway program also has a large impact on the safety of our roads. In a KDVR Channel 13 News article written by Nicole Fierro in 2020 titled, Colorado Spent Millions on Highway Debris Clean-up in 2020, a study from AAA found nearly 37% of all deaths in road debris crashes resulted from the driver swerving to avoid hitting an object.
We [Dads of Castle Rock] are always looking for more assistance from the community. It’s a great way for high school students to get community service hours and might serve as a reminder before someone throws their trash out of their car!Brandon Adams
Having pride in our community goes beyond saying good things about it and posting about events and fundraisers on social media. It’s about taking action to do what we can to ensure that we take care of our community the same way we take care of each other.