Allen Creek Elementary gets spring-cleaning

MARYSVILLE — Allen Creek Elementary got a spring cleaning courtesy of its PTSA May 22.

An estimated 50 parents, teachers and students turned out to do garbage pickup, weeding, old paint scraping and fresh paint application to the south side of the school building.

"Last August, we worked on the front of the building," Allen Creek Elementary PTSA President Kimberly DeLap said. "This year, we're going corner-to-corner, repainting gutters, trim, doors, windows and tiles."

The Marysville School District donated 15 gallons of paint for the project, while the PTSA itself recruited the volunteer labor, including professional painter Keith Devereux, who took to the roof to touch up the building's peaks.

"We're doing whatever it takes to keep up pride and student achievement," Allen Creek Elementary Principal Kristin DeWitte said, as she scraped paint off the underside of the school's overhang.

Diane Mittelstadt, one of the school's teachers who turned out to repaint its drainpipes, praised her fellow volunteers for helping the school make improvements in the midst of ongoing tough economic times.

"It's hard to get up early on a Saturday morning," Mittelstadt laughed. "The friendliness and willingness of everyone here to help out makes it all worth it, though."

Dawn Bleakley and her daughter Ani, a fourth-grader at the school, showed up to paint tiles. After having done similar cleanup work at the school last August, Ani offered some insights on how to do it properly.

"You start by outlining the tiles, without getting any paint on the concrete," said Ani, who'd worn old clothes that could afford to be stained by paint. "You'll want to edge it out with quick strokes, with not too much paint on the brush. You don't want the paint to be too thin, either, or else people will see that it's been painted over."

Mari-Anne Nehring supervised her son Nick, also a fourth-grader at the school, as he dug up weeds.

"It's good for the kids to take pride in their school," Nehring said. "If they do work like this on the school grounds, there's less chance that they'll make the school look not so good."

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