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Denton Benefit League: Committed to Keeping Denton Clean

Since 1992, the Adopt-A-Spot program has engaged volunteers to clean up a street, park, or trail on a recurring basis. Denton Benefit League (DBL) was one of the first adopters registering for their “spot” in 1993. Over the years, DBL has remained active in the program, even having three different cleanup locations across the city at one time!

Denton Benefit League during a cleanup.

Current DBL President, Shelley Anthony, shares the value DBL sees in the Adopt-A-Spot program, “We wanted to be a part of helping Denton stay beautiful. I feel like being a part of the cleanups allows others to see that we care about Denton and we are setting an example. Some participants also include their family members and it sets an expectation helping others.”

DBL has worked diligently at their locations for 27 years donating over 2,250 hours of service and removing more than 6.5 tons of litter from our community. The women’s group has also sponsored the program funding roadway signage to recognize the hard work of volunteers at each “spot”. We are grateful for DBL’s commitment to improving the quality of life in Denton and their long-term support of the Adopt-A-Spot program.

Rose Costumes’ Adopt-A-Spot & Mia

The Adopt-A-Spot location on Sherman Drive between Elm and Locust Streets has been maintained by Rose Costumes for nearly 30 years. In addition to keeping the area litter-free and mowed, Judy Smith, founder of Rose Costumes, decorates the Spot – you may have seen Christmas stockings or sneakers adorning the fence. One pair of these sneakers has very special meaning.

In December 2011, Julia Sandoval stopped by Rose Costumes inquiring if her niece Alexis Mia Sandoval’s shoes could be placed on the fence at the business’ Spot. Mia who had been a first grader at Lee Elementary (now Alexander Elementary) had recently passed away from a rare disease. Judy obliged placing Mia’s shoes in memory of the little girl. The sneakers, decorated with her favorite cartoon Hello Kitty, were signed by her family before having them placed.

A few years later in 2015, a woman brought a man to the counter of Rose Costumes. The couple was Aaron Sandoval, Mia’s father, and Lindsey, his wife, who had been encouraging Aaron to reach out to Judy. He had brought a bouquet of flowers to Judy thanking her for keeping a memorial for his little girl, and asked if there was anything he could do to help. Judy explained that it had become more difficult for her to mow and the additional help she had been receiving had also stopped. Aaron volunteered in the store that day and started mowing the Spot in honor of Mia. He continues to mow and edge the grass weekly.

After meeting Aaron, Judy had a pink memorial sign made for Mia. Each year, for Mia’s birthday, Judy adds a hat or toy next to the sign. In 2018, a little boy asked if he too could have his shoes hung on the fence. Judy happily added the shoes, and says Mia now has a friend.