JEFFERSON CITY – It’s spring cleaning time. The month of April marks Missouri’s annual No MOre Trash! Bash coordinated by the Missouri Department of Transportation. During the annual statewide anti-litter event, volunteers are encouraged to clean up litter adjacent to highways to help beautify Missouri.
The No MOre Trash! Bash is an annual outreach of MoDOT’s year-round litter control efforts. It has been held every spring since 2004 except for 2020 when COVID-19 forced the cancellation of the event out of safety concerns. Additional COVID-19 restrictions limited the use of nearly 240 work release prisoners and required social distancing for field operations engaged in litter control performed by MoDOT staff. These factors have contributed to a marked increase in trash along Missouri’s highways.
“Keeping Missouri’s highways clean is a shared responsibility between MoDOT, those who use our roadways and many of the volunteers who help every year to make a difference in how this great state looks to the travelling public,” said Becky Allmeroth, chief safety and operations officer. "The Trash Bash is a great opportunity for students, civic groups and those looking to receive community service credit while they beautify their community. Over the years, our volunteers have made this program a success.”
Last year, MoDOT spent $6.4 million to remove litter from more than 385,000 acres of roadsides along 34,000 state highway miles. The annual volunteer efforts to pick up litter along Missouri highway—including the Adopt-A-Highway program—have been valued at more than $1 million.
“Every effort by the public to eliminate or clean up litter helps offset trash removal costs and allows the department to put more money back into maintaining Missouri's roads and bridges,” Allmeroth said. “We encourage our Adopt-A-Highway volunteers to do their section pickups in April but we also invite anyone from the community who wants to help to join in for a one-time pickup.”
This year’s No MOre Trash! Bash kickoff will include virtual events with Adopt-A-Highway volunteers, students and community groups interested in participating in roadside trash pickup. Trash bags and safety vests will be provided to groups engaged in litter pickup.
Groups are encouraged to exercise special COVID-19 safety precautions. To learn more about how you can safely participate, visit www.modot.org/adopt-highway or call 1-888-ASK-MODOT (1-888-275-6636).