This past Saturday was a big day for Lafayette. Over 3,000 students and volunteers came together under the organization of United Way of Acadiana for a Day of Action, also known as the UL Big Event. One of the many volunteer projects was Community Releaf, where 200 trees will be planted at parks around the city.

Another project was a massive litter cleanup and visual display. 1,000 students worked in teams of 25 to pick up litter around the city, and it was collected and brought to the grassy field across from Cajun Field. There, eight-foot tall chicken-coop letters spelling #YARDWORK were on display, and all the collected litter filled up the letters. It is incredible to see.

Each letter was made up of specific types of trash. The # and Y were composed of trash from the Vermilion River. If only I could convey to you how fragrant it was out in that open, sunny field in front of those letters. Every so often, the wind would blow a little and the smell would fill our noses.

Also of note, our river is not the place for you to dump a CPAP machine. JUST SAYIN'.

The A, R, R and K were all filled with miscellaneous litter.

The D was dedicated to water bottles and other plastic bottles.

The W ended up holding trashed auto parts. Nothing like wrecked bumpers left on our roadways.

The O was full of illegal road signs. These are one of the biggest eyesores in the city, so it's nice to see them get cleaned up. If you insist on using yard signs, make sure to follow local sign ordinances first (page 26, you're welcome.)

I pitched in by taking a walk around my neighborhood Saturday morning and collected a bag full of trash - mainly drink bottles and cigarette butts. My boyfriend and I hopped on our bikes to head to the litter letters, me with a basket full of trash. I also couldn't help myself from picking up some litter on our bike ride. Thank you, whoever left half a cardboard box that used to hold maxipads. It's now in the R.

I've never felt so eco-nerdy as I did when riding my bicycle with a basket full of trash. It was like Treehugger ET Phone Home. I kept waiting for my bike to levitate, but it never did.

If you haven't checked out the giant #YARDWORK yet, make your way past Cajun Field soon, where the letters will remain at least through Homecoming on Saturday. (And if that doesn't inspire you to recycle while tailgating, then I'm just going to have to go stronger on the persuasion!)

Awesome job to everyone who spent their Saturday (and even Friday) hard at work and elbow-deep in trash!

The Litter Letter Project created this awesome time lapse video of the letters getting filled up. This was seriously all trash in our waterways and on our roads - our front yard. CLEAN. IT. UP.

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