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Bringing back the love
Annual event looks to reignite community service
Love Turlock preview pic
Eddie and Melanie Youkhana of the Love Turlock leadership team pose in front of one of the many signs put up around town (CHRISTOPHER CORREA/The Journal).

The 11th annual Love Turlock day of service will make its return on April 30. The event, which is ran by a group of volunteers, encourages community members to get involved in different kinds of charity work. Activities scheduled for this year’s event include picking up trash around town, landscaping, recycling, renovating community buildings and providing resources to less fortunate community members among other things.

“I feel like there's been a really big interest and I think it's just because our community has been through so much the last few years, and I think people are really wanting to make it different,” said Love Turlock Chair Lindsay Plett. “I also think that they're wanting to get back out and connect in their community again, so I'm expecting we're going to have a really great turn out this year.”

According to Plett, there are currently over 400 volunteers signed up to participate in Love Turlock activities during this year’s Love Turlock celebrations. Volunteers stem from local churches, charity organizations and schools, to ordinary Turlock residents.

“We reach out and try to connect with most of the nonprofits in town to help support them and meeting their needs and promoting things that they're doing,” Plett said. “It’s in our heart for everyone in our community to be a part of it, and it's really to bringing our community together.”

Plett encouraged all members of the Turlock community to look at the current list of scheduled activities at and sign up. She also explained how the team of volunteers at Love Turlock are always looking for recommendations for different service activities.

“Project suggestions from the community can also be submitted on our website, so if you know someone elderly or who are limited physically that needs help cleaning up trash in their driveway and doing some yard trimming, we’re always open to those types of projects,” she said.

One of the newest activities added to the schedule is a clothing and baby stroller collection for Afghan refugees in Turlock. Volunteers will also have an opportunity to create homemade teddy bears to gift to local children in crisis.

Ceremonies will kick off at 8 a.m. April 30 at Donnelly Park. Mayor Amy Bublak will speak and Junior ROTC color guard will officially commemorate the start of the festivities. All activities are scheduled to conclude at noon, while aluminum can and bottle collection will continue up until 2 p.m.

“This is a day where we get to show up and love on our city,” Plett said. “It can be a real catalyst for more good throughout the year.”