ALTON - Local “Welcome to Alton” signs have received an update thanks to Pride, Incorporated, Alton Township, Alton Public Works and Route 3 Films.

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Pride, Inc. is a local organization that completes beautification projects throughout the Riverbend region. When Natalie Merrill, Vice President of Beautification, saw a Facebook post by Ryan Hanlon with Route 3 Films about a new sign he had installed near Homer Adams Parkway, she knew Pride, Inc. had to get involved. Together, the organizations have revitalized the welcome signs around Alton.

“There’s so many opportunities for improvement and rejuvenating and refreshing landscaped areas,” Merrill said. “I say we try to help with one corner and one street at a time. So we do what we can and partner with other organizations sometimes, and it’s amazing what we can all do together when we put our heads together. Many hands make light work.”

Merrill explained that Pride, Inc. collaborated with Hanlon to complete the landscaping around the new sign at Homer Adams Parkway. They also updated the landscaping and lighting around two other signs in the Alton area.

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Carolyn MacAfee, Pride, Inc. board member and Alderwoman for the Second Ward, approached Alton Township about contributing funds to the project. With this money, Pride, Inc. was able to purchase another new “Welcome to Alton” sign and install it on Alby Street. The Alton Public Works Department donated the poles and poured the concrete for the new sign.

“Sometimes our projects keep evolving because we find more and more needs,” Merrill said. “We have a beautiful community with this river and so much historic value here and so many beautiful pieces of property and landmarks that people travel across the state to visit, and we feel that it’s so important to keep everything looking beautiful and to keep our community thriving.”

Merrill noted that Pride, Inc.’s beautification projects emphasize the importance of taking pride in the community. Through the new welcome signs and the other projects they complete, she hopes to encourage more people to move to the area and appreciate Alton’s beauty.

“We really feel like it impacts our whole community and impacts people wanting to move to our town when we are putting our best foot forward and making a good impression,” she added. “When the tourists and the home shoppers are looking for a place where they want to raise their families or start a business or get a job here, we want it always looking its best.”

For more information about Pride, Incorporated, including how to get involved, visit their official website at PrideIncorporated.org.

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