GARBAGE IN GASTON: Frank Tomski remembers when Gaston Park was the beautiful backdrop of his childhood days. Now, the sales representative for Elder Ag --amp; Turf Equipment Co. of East Palestine, Ohio, is disgusted by how unkempt the park has become. So he asked construction-related businesses throughout western Pennsylvania to volunteer time and machinery. He thought prospective buyers would be able to see what these machines -- including products from Gehl, John Deere and Pitt Power -- are capable of doing. LABOR STARTED: Volunteers spent a day working in Thursday's hot and humid weather, and Tomski said the companies will finish Friday. Robert Vasko, a territory manager for Pitt Power Products Co. in Cranberry said he thinks the project will take longer than two days to finish. The need for volunteers is great, he said, and without their help, the cleanup could take up to a week. More time spent on the project could mean more money as well, he added. After two days of work, he estimated a cost of $50,000 for the manpower and equipment used.

GRATEFUL: Roy Hazen, 64, a neighbor of the East Side park, said he is happy people are volunteering time and equipment to improve New Castle. "This is my front yard," he said. "I could never drive a square inch around here without running over garbage. No one patrols the park and there is no maintenance." When the park is clean, Hazen said, he hopes the mayor will maintain it so people will go to Gaston once again.

HOW TO HELP: Tomski anticipates a lot of volunteers at the park Friday. He said anyone can help support the community. "Everybody from the townships and municipalities are invited. If these people come out, it'll show who wants to see New Castle succeed." Those planning to help should park at Cascade Park, and a shuttle bus will take them to Gaston, Tomski said. Companies interested in donating money for the cleanup efforts should call Elder at (800) 471-3373.

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