Hammond named cleanest city 10 consecutive years

For the 10th year in a row, Hammond was named Cleanest City in District H and in Louisiana.  Hammond was selected as cleanest city by three qualified judges and  the district director.

For the 10th year in a row, Hammond was named Cleanest City in District H and in Louisiana.  Hammond was selected as cleanest city by three qualified judges and  the district director.
The Lion's Roar/Morgan Ledet

Winning cleanest city for 10 years in a row is not all fun and games, it is about keeping up the beauty that is Hammond.

For the 10th year in a row, Hammond has been named Cleanest City in Louisiana. This contest is sponsored by the Louisiana Garden Club Federation, Inc. and Hammond is sponsored by the Hammond Garden Club. Hammond is in District H and they are in the 15,000 to 44,999 population out of 10 other districts. 

“All entrants must be sponsored by a Federated Garden Club to enter,” said the Executive Director of Keep Hammond Beautiful Dori St. Cyr. “There is an application and fee to enter. District judging takes place in March and state judging in April.”

For this contest, the LGCF sends three qualified judges and the district director to judge 10 categories. 

“The judges evaluate three key areas: litter-free, beautiful landscaping and evidence of the city’s commitment to these efforts year-round,” said St. Cyr. “For example, the judges examine the city approaches and look for weeds around poles, signs and ditches. They look for cigarette butts, weeds in cracks of sidewalks and litter in street curbs and fences. They expect to see vacant lots mowed and litter free, and they want to see that a city is controlling problems associated with abandoned buildings and cars.”

During the process of keeping Hammond beautiful, there are pictures taken to show the efforts of everyone keeping Hammond beautiful. 

“The Hammond Garden Club produces an incredible scrapbook that shows the efforts of volunteers, city staff, city code enforcement and the Keep Hammond Beautiful members throughout the year,” said St. Cyr.

Protecting Hammond’s beauty comes with plenty of work and there are numerous people who take part in this process.

“The City Parks & Grounds Department picks up litter in different districts every week, cuts grass in city rights-of-way and parks and adds colorful plants to the city landscaping,” said St. Cyr. “The City Street Department cleans drainage catch basins, tasks employees to pick up litter along the cleanest city route and side streets as the competition approaches and coordinates the street sweeping schedule and the garbage and recycling contracts throughout the year.”

What some residents of Hammond may not know is that volunteers take part in cleanups throughout the city on a daily basis and also hold monthly cleanup days. These take place nine times out of the year at many different locations around the city and they also host educational events at schools around the city. Weeks before the contest, these volunteers focus on collecting the trash along the route with cleanup days so the city is top notch for when the judges arrive. 

As an employee of the City of Hammond Street Department, St. Cyr thinks this award is an honor.

“It is a wonderful experience for all city employees who have been keeping Hammond beautiful the past 10 years,” said St. Cyr. “It is a great honor to the city.”

According to St. Cyr, there are ways we can keep our city clean for another 10 years. 

“Remind everyone to not litter especially cigarette butts,” said St. Cyr. “I would also like seeing more litter citations written when someone is seen throwing trash down in city parks or while driving through town.”