South County Beat: Folks come out to ‘make a difference’

About 100 volunteers in Arroyo Grande and Nipomo recently came out to perform environmental work in the South County as part of the national Make a Difference Day.

The annual event, which is held on the fourth Saturday of every October, encourages communities to do service projects, such as cleaning up landscapes or helping the homeless.

Arroyo Grande in Bloom, an organization that does beautification projects around the city, spearheaded this year’s team in Arroyo Grande.

About 50 volunteers worked on four projects around town, including removing dead brush behind Paulding Elementary School and ivy along the fence by the city’s fire station.

Preserving acorns for the future was the goal of a team of volunteers in Nipomo.

Participants collected more than 20,000 acorns by hand from native oak trees. They prepared the nuts for storage by soaking them in water, drying and bagging them for refrigeration over the winter.

The acorns will be used for future plantings at a restoration site in Nipomo near the historic Dana Adobe.

Volunteers in Nipomo partnered with The Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo and the Dana Adobe Nipomo Amigos to complete the project. Cal Poly student volunteers from Sigma Kappa Sorority and the American Marketing Association also pitched in to help.

— Sona Patel

Donation sites set up for costumes

Looking to get rid of your child’s used Halloween costume? Donation sites have been setup around the county to help needy children who don’t have costumes. Residents can drop them off in bins at three locations in the county, including one in Grover Beach at the Exploration Station at 867 Ramona Ave. The other sites are the Paso Robles Children’s Museum at 623 13th St., and Family Care Network at 3765 S. Higuera St. in San Luis Obispo. Costumes can also be dropped off after Halloween at the museum, Exploration Station, Grade Potential at 1411 Marsh St., and the United Church of Christ Congregational in San Luis Obispo at 11245 Los Osos Valley Rd.

— Sona Patel