UMass Community to Participate in Ninth Annual "Into Amherst" Community Service Day

AMHERST, Mass. - Approximately 300 students from the University of Massachusetts will participate in the ninth annual "Into Amherst," a day of community service geared toward the cleanup and beautification of the town of Amherst, on Sat., April 27 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

Participation by UMass students has been organized by the Office of Community Service Learning (CSL) at Commonwealth College, the University''s honors program. Support and participation in the event have grown steadily over the years, said Maleah Gustafson, a graduate student and major events coordinator for CSL. "We are expecting this to be the largest ''Into Amherst'' yet," Gustafson said. "I am impressed by the number of students who enthusiastically offered to give up their Saturday for this event. Students are looking forward to contributing their energy to completing needed projects."

"Into Amherst" will kick off at 9 a.m. at Sweetser Park on Main Street with a welcome by Chancellor Marcellette Williams and Amherst Select Board member Eva Schiffer. Volunteers will depart for their sites at 9:30 a.m. by walking or taking buses donated by UMass Transit Services. Volunteers will work from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Projects include painting the interior and exterior of buildings, beautifying conservation areas, improving playgrounds, gardening, and other projects. The projects have been organized through 24 local community organizations and town of Amherst programs. The work will be followed by a lunch and celebration from 1-3 p.m. at the Bangs Community Center with food donated by Amherst-area businesses.

The following UMass groups will be participating: Lambda Upsilon Lambda fraternity, Boltwood Project, Circle K, Pierpont/Moore Dormitory, Omega Delta fraternity, Psi Chi, Alpha Phi Omega, Southwest/South staff, Theta Chi fraternity, SHARE, Patterson Dormitory, Coolidge Tower, Washington Tower, and IMPACT! Learning Community.

The following community groups will participate: ABC House, Amherst Fire Department, Amherst History Museum, Amherst Cinema, LSSE - Amherst Leisure Services, Amherst Survival Center, Amherst Regional High School, Amherst SALT Council, Fort River School, Jones Library, Munson Library, Amherst Conservation Commission, Amherst Veteran''s Service, and Wildwood School.

The following area businesses are donating food for volunteers: The Black Sheep Cafe, Amber Waves, Antonio''s, Amherst Chinese Food, Applebee''s, Atlantis, Bueno Y Sano, Daisey''s Restaurant, Delano''s, Domino''s Pizza, Fresh Side, Friendly''s Ice Cream, Judie''s, La Vera Cruzana, La Cucina Di Pinocchio, Panda East, Pizza Hut, Stables Sandwich Shop, Stop & Shop, The Sub, The Harp, and Subway.

For more information, contact Maleah Gustafson at 413/545-2015 or, or John Clobridge, of the Amherst Senior Center, at 413/256-4057.