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November 19, 2009
By Skyler Dillon
The University of Nevada, Reno sororities and fraternities will band together to make the Reno area more beautiful this week. On Friday, Nov. 20, Nevada's Greek organizations will clean up five community parks as part of their Greek Week celebration.
Greek Week is an annual fall event at the University in which Greek chapters hold a variety of events on campus for their members and compete for points. This year's week, Nov. 16-20, includes a barbecue, a comedy show and an Olympics relay contest. The week culminates in the All Greek Ball on Friday evening, which members practice for in a dance-off the day before.
"The whole week just strengthens ties between Greeks and allows you to meet a lot of new people you wouldn't have otherwise known," said Lindsey Stull, a journalism major and one of the events' organizers.
One of the biggest aspects of Greek Week is the participants' community service project. Past projects have included food and clothing drives, but Stull said that this year the Greeks tried to serve in a way that would both help the community and not cost members any money.
"The economy is so rough right now that donating money is hard for a lot of people," she said. "We want to show that the most valuable thing you can donate is time."
As a result, the Greeks will work with the City of Reno and Washoe County Regional Parks and Open Space to perform clean-ups at Rancho San Rafael, Golden Valley, Riverside Drive, McKinley and Lunsford parks. Each Nevada sorority and fraternity will be involved, allowing for a team of 25-30 students at each park.
"It's wonderful to see all the members coming together to help out and getting to know students outside their particular chapter," said Stull.
Washoe County Commissioner Kitty Jung will tour the parks the day of the clean-up to witness the progress and thank the students for their work.
"Students will pick up litter and leaves and plant beds," said Washoe County Liaison Sarah Tone. "They'll be doing general things to make the parks better for the community."
"I know a lot of people are looking forward to it," said Stull. "I'm glad that this gives the community an opportunity to see what we're here for, what we're about and how we can help them."
Participation in the service project and other Greek Week events, as well as victories in the Olympics relay contest and the dance-off, earn points for each respective Greek chapter, one of which will be named the overall Greek Week winner at the conclusion of the week.