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Boca Raton city councilman starts 'Run the City' program

Andy Thomson picks up trash along his route
Posted at 11:24 PM, Sep 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-30 23:48:23-04

BOCA RATON — When Andy Thomson goes out for a run, it's more than just to put in the miles.

"We pick up litter and I get some exercise," he said.

Yes, the Boca Raton council member picks up trash while he runs with his kids.

in fact, it's become an initiative called "Run the City." There are 475 miles of streets in the entirety of Boca Raton. Thomson's pledge is to run all of them while picking up trash.

"But I figured if I split it up to do three miles here, four miles there over the course of an entire year you could actually do it and I've been doing it all of 2021," he said.

Thomson started running the streets on the fly but eventually got help from the city's sanitation department.

"They have an app that shows all of the routes and all of the maps all throughout the city. All you have to do is click on one and you hit the begin route and it tells you where to go," he said.

Since the start of January family and volunteers have picked up over a thousand pounds of trash.

Volunteers like Katie MacDougall encouraged others to help out.

"People showed up," he said. "We had t-shirts. People had their buckets and their prongs, and it was incredible the amount of trash that we picked up just this little stretch of road was incredible."

Thomson said the goal is to keep Boca Raton a beautiful city.

"But the truth is, the stuff is out there, whether it's water bottles, straws or plastic bags or more and more, although maybe less now, masks," he said.

Thomson said this initiative isn't just a one-off. He said it will more than likely continue into 2022.