By JESSICA ARSENAULT RIVENBURG

HERKIMER – Volunteers with the Launch Herkimer initiative spent Saturday morning cleaning the 100 block of North Main Street, which was closed to traffic between 10 a.m. and noon.

About 25 people turned out to sweep, wash windows, prune and weed around trees, pick up litter and otherwise spruce up the sidewalk and street.

“This is our first big project this year,” said Miriam Curry, an organizer of the cleanup. “We plan to work our way down the street and hopefully even get to the side streets, though it’s probably a bit too late to get to it all this year.”

Arranging a cleanup on this scale took weeks of planning and permission, Curry said.

“We’d like to thank all the business owners for putting up with us blocking traffic and cleaning today,” said Robert Schrader, Herkimer County legislator, as he shoveled debris into a garbage bag held by Joseph Chilelli, owner of the Mohawk Valley Community Market. “It’s a great team effort here today, and we welcome anyone to join our team.”

“We want to attract new business. We want it to be a thriving community and we want it to look nice,” Curry said.

Launch Herkimer is currently in the process of becoming a non-profit organization, which will involve a name change, Curry said. The group has already filed for 501c3 status and will soon be known as Herkimer Next Incorporated.