Keep Victoria Beautiful provides clean-up equipment to interested volunteer groups

VICTORIA, Texas – Christy Youker joined us on Community Crossroads to share the latest ongoings of Keep Victoria Beautiful. KVB is a local non-profit that recognizes businesses for their beautification efforts in the shared mission to make Victoria a beautiful place to live. The organization also provides neighborhood clean-up equipment to interested volunteer groups.

The following is a transcript:

Carolina Astrain: Welcome back. We’re joined now by Christy Youker with Keep Victoria Beautiful. She’s here to share what they’ve been up to. How’s it going, Christy? Thanks for having me. Well, we’re so happy to have you, and I hear you actually have a new awardee.

Christy Youker: Yes, we do. One of the things that Keep Victoria Beautiful is really excited that we just begun just in the past few months is our business beautification award. And this award goes to a business that goes the extra mile in terms of making space look better. It might be new landscaping, flowers, just keeping it looking nice. It might be just hanging plants, you know, and if you don’t have a lot of green areas, just, you know, spiffing up the business that when you drive by or walk by you notice it. So we want to honor those businesses that are really contributing to our quality of life in Victoria.

Astrain: And I know el noveo rodeo restaurant was awarded recently.

Youker: Yeah. Yes. So the New Rodeo Restaurant right there at Main and Navarro, I believe, won our first award and, we have a new winner and that is Vela Farms. So they are an example of somewhere that doesn’t have landscaping, but clearly if you’ve been by or walked by their spot downtown, you can see their gorgeous hanging baskets, just the bistro tables and the way they’ve made a very concrete, you know, glass space look really inviting.

Astrain: Yes. Vela Farms is stunning. And I think it’s maybe its third location since I’ve lived here. It’s really wonderful.

Youker: Right? Right. So we really want to promote, you know, any business can do something extra, whether you, you know, you have a big landscape or not. So it’s really a positive way to give these businesses the attention they deserve, uh, for making our Victoria even more beautiful.

Astrain: Well, it really does make a difference. It adds to the self-esteem of the community and it just makes you that much more excited, show it off to family visiting. Right.

Youker: And that’s really the point of key Victoria. Beautiful is that this is our community and we want to feel proud of it. And that means we all have to do our part to do that. And you have to feel that. And so when you see your neighbor or a business, just making their space look better and helping their neighborhood look better, their neighborhood park, their schools, uh, it, it encourages others to do the same. It’s not somebody else’s responsibility. It’s our responsibility.

Astrain: Aside from the beautification recognition and awards, there are also volunteer opportunities. I noticed this on your Facebook Page.

Youker: Absolutely. We are really, you know, like many organizations, we’re just in the last few minutes getting really going again. And we are really kicking off some, some more cleanups. And while we’re going to have several a year that are really big cleanups, we’re also promoting what we’re calling clean sweeps, which are if you have a day if you have a weekend and you have a group or a family and you want to say, I want to go help the community, you let us know and we’ll hook you up.

Astrain: Oh, wow. So you get the equipment?

Youker: Yes, we’ll come to pick up all the trash. Yes. Like grabbers and bags and vests.

Astrain: That’s amazing.

Youker: So, and we’ll pick up the trash. So we’ll, you know, we’ll have our team go by and get it all for you and, and you can feel like, wow, I spent an hour or so. And I feel good.

Astrain: And how long has Keep Victoria Beautiful been in existence?

Youker: Well, it wasn’t in existence before. And if you’ve been here for a while, you might’ve remembered that, um, I am new to the area. So, uh, so it really revived, uh, just before, uh, just before the pandemic. So it just was put some more energy into it and the city is also supporting it. And so we now have, uh, you know, we’re, we’re ready to go.

Astrain: Excellent. It’s great to see the city partner with local nonprofits to make sure they can realize their true potential.

Youker: Absolutely. And it shows the city’s commitment to, you know, this also has us feeling better about our community and taking care of our natural environment, but it’s also important for economic viability of Victoria, as you know, nobody wants to come and invest if it’s not an inviting community. Definitely. So it’s important to, you know, to promote that as well.

Astrain: Well thank you for coming on Community Crossroads to promote Keep Victoria Beautiful. And if you want to contact Christy, there is the info right there on your screen. You can go to the website and get involved with keeping Victoria beautiful. And I want to give you a look at what we’re working on for next week. You can expect to hear from Theater Victoria and its production of Legally Blonde. Thank you for joining us for Community Crossroads and thank you to our guests. Meridith Byrd, Captain RJ Shelley, and Christie Euchre. If you have a story idea, email me castrain@victoriatelevision.com. Have a great weekend and see you next week.