The first round of the green and yellow banners were hung between Raider Drive and Willow Street, and included 24 different sponsors whose names hung below the banner which said, “Celebrating 10 Years of the Greenway!”
When the local Greenway board agreed to pursue a second round of the banner program, it was unknown whether the sponsors would see the value of wanting to renew their sponsorship. Lo and behold, not only did 22 of the 24 original sponsors renew, a couple of them bought a second banner to go along with the 20-plus new sponsors whose banners now adorn the Greenway from Raider Drive in the opposite direction to Mohawk Drive.
This new generation of banners consists of four celebratory statements relating to life in Cleveland and Bradley County. They were proposed to potential sponsors as they purchased space in the program, but no organization was guaranteed they would be assigned any of the four sayings, as they were not intended to match with any organizational purpose or philosophy.
After the banners were hung in random order, it is interesting to note how many of them are acutely appropriate. As I have run the Greenway, I have noted the ways the slogans and the sponsors are connected with the sayings:
n Celebrating Our Heritage! First Baptist Church and Whirlpool are two of the most established organizations in our county. Cleveland City Schools has created much of our heritage, while Tri-Con Construction is literally constructing our future heritage. Bank of Cleveland’s main branch occupies one of the county’s most historic buildings. Then, there is Southern Heritage Bank.
n Celebrating Our Community! Mayor Tom Rowland and state Rep. Kevin Brooks, the only two-“person” sponsors of a banner, would certainly tell you this is appropriate for them. Habitat for Humanity is building our community one house at a time. The Chamber of Commerce literally exists for our community, while Mars Chocolate invests in our community workforce. Part of the YMCA’s corporate slogan has the word “community” in it.
n Celebrating Our Quality of Life! Part of the mission of the organization People for Care and Learning is to improve the “Q of L” in their hometown of Cleveland, as they have done through numerous projects on the Greenway. The city of Cleveland maintains the Q of L on the Greenway as the official caretakers. The Rotary Club and Church of God also make improving the quality of life part of their missions, and by funding numerous nonprofits, the United Way strives to improve the quality of life for families across our county.
n Celebrating Our Health! This one was sketchy in spots and obvious in others. Sponsors under this banner included SkyRidge Medical Center, Garden Plaza, Aspire Orthodontics, Oakmont Eye Center and Surgical Associates. However, North Cleveland Church of God would reason that they are interested in everyone’s spiritual health. Lee University is a proponent of academic health and PM Alarms might argue that they are protecting your health with a working alarm system in your home. I contributed toward the Cleveland Half Marathon Warrior banner and I can assure you this group is celebrating our health!
As I stated, these banner assignments were purely random, as they were hung by the crews from Cleveland Utilities. There were many others that I did not mention here that are just as appropriate for their sayings.
I invite everyone to take a stroll on our Greenway and read for yourselves and support our many Greenway banner sponsors.
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