DETROIT (WWJ) – The Detroit Mower Gang is back in action, kicking grass and saving parks across the city — one overgrown, garbage-littered field at a time.
This weekend, the mower gang will start a new year of mowing Detroit parks that are in need of some major cleanup. Founder Tom Nardone said it’s the fourth year the gang, made up entirely of volunteers, will be cleaning up “Mow-town.”
“We try to take care of parks and playgrounds that have equipment in them and that the city isn’t able to,” Nardone said. “Last year, we kept 14 parks in operation so we really enjoy it. Usually every other Wednesday night we’re out there mowing as a group.”
The gang will start Saturday morning at Riverfront-Lakewood Park, off Altar Road on the city’s eastside — a location they’ve never been able to tame. Last year, the park swallowed two mower belts and a whole mess of time.
“We go to these parks and the grass can be waist-deep, shoulder-deep, and there’s swing sets there and it’s always fun when you mow around the swing sets. The littlest kids see you and then they come out and play, and you realize that by just driving around in circles on a lawn tractor, you made it so kids have some place to play,” Nardone said.
This year, Weingartz is supporting the mower gang by fixing equipment and sharpening blades. The company recently donated a Billy Goat Brush Cutter that will mow down everything, including trees and brush with diameters up to two-inches.
“The Detroit Mower Gang has been really attractive to us here at Weingartz because we just love what they’re doing,” Dan Weingartz said. “They’re taking some of the blight out of the city, they’re giving the kids a place to play, cleaning up what’s going on, and they’re doing it with equipment that’s near and dear to our hearts.”
Next Wednesday, the gang is planning to play “Mower Polo” on their tractors at O’Shea Park at Greenfield Road and I-96. The group also has the Motown Mowdown planned for May 17, when the group will mow in parks for 12 hours straight.
You can follow the Detroit Mower Gang and find ways to help their efforts on their Facebook page.