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‘Love Costa Mesa’ community service day returns Saturday

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Youths from the Sunburst Youth Challenge Academy bag tumbleweeds in Fairview Park during last year’s “Love Costa Mesa” event. The citywide community service day returns Saturday.
(File Photo)

Costa Mesa will get a heaping helping of TLC this weekend with the return of “Love Costa Mesa,” a citywide community service day.

The event — organized for the second consecutive year by Trellis, a consortium of local churches — will feature hundreds of volunteers fanning out across the city Saturday to tackle about three dozen projects ranging from restoring native plants at Fairview Park to cleaning the area around the recently opened animal adoption center to painting at Lighthouse Church of the Nazarene, site of the city’s new 50-bed homeless shelter.

“This is one day a year where we can all set any differences aside and we can all work together on projects throughout the city to make our parks better, our schools better, make the streets cleaner and help our neighbors out,” said Ian Stevenson, executive director of Trellis. “It’s really about collaboration and civic pride.”

Stevenson said he hopes to attract more than 600 volunteers — essentially double last year’s number — and said the selection of service projects is larger this time as well.

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Volunteers will gather first in the parking lot of Newport Mesa Church, 2599 Newport Blvd. After an opening rally and breakfast at about 8 a.m., teams will head to their project sites at 9 a.m., returning at noon for lunch.

Several projects are already fully booked. Spots were still available for the following as of Tuesday afternoon:

  • Volunteering with Second Chance Orange County
  • Sprucing up the Maple Learning Center
  • Cleaning and beautifying Rea Elementary School
  • Doing handyman-type tasks at Sonora Elementary School
  • Building a vegetable garden for Share Our Selves
  • Clearing trash and overgrown vegetation at Crossing Church
  • Restoring native plants and removing invasive species at Canyon Park
  • Cleaning up near Sonora Elementary School and Shalimar Park
  • Picking up trash along Adams Avenue
  • Beautifying a shared backyard for a triplex on Canyon Drive
  • Painting crosswalk murals on Anaheim Avenue
  • Helping elderly residents with yard work and painting
  • Stocking the food bank at Orange Coast College
  • Writing letters to and drawing pictures for city leaders and public safety personnel
  • Arranging flowers for staff and residents of local nursing homes
  • Cleaning the area by the Priceless Pets orphanage
  • Removing weeds, trash and debris on Victoria Street
  • Reporting graffiti and collecting trash in the Westside
  • Organizing the Fresh Beginnings Ministries warehouse
  • Conducting a food and supply drive for the Costa Mesa homeless shelter
  • Volunteering with Crittenton Services for Children and Families
  • Participating in a prayer walk

For more information about available projects or how to participate, visit lovecostamesa.org or contact Stevenson at ian@wearetrellis.com or (949) 422-5331.

“Love Costa Mesa” is part of the broader “Love Our Cities” campaign that includes similar service events in Anaheim, Brea, Fullerton, La Habra, Los Alamitos, Orange, Placentia, Santa Ana and Tustin, according to its website.

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Stevenson said the plan is to hold “Love Costa Mesa” annually the weekend after Mother’s Day.

“The more buy-in that this gets from our community, the more impact it will make to our community,” he said.

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