Nicholasville businesswoman Stephanie Stratton did not believe she would ever see her stolen wallet again. Coca-Cola Refreshments employee Frank Batton and his family were expecting to find trash and litter at Masterson Station Park.
But their worlds came together last Saturday at the park when Batton’s wife, Dawn, found Stratton’s wallet deep in brush next to a creek.
Stratton’s wallet was stolen last Friday as she was setting up a booth at the Kentucky Sheep and Fiber Festival. Stratton’s business, Lunabudknits, sells dyed wool and fiber. The Batton family was part of a contingent of Coca-Cola employees and their families conducting a litter pick up as part of the Great American Cleanup (GAC) in Lexington.
“I was ecstatic. It was just a shock,” said Stratton, who started her business in 2007. “I really appreciate that they found it and they even brought it to me.”
Although cash had been removed, the wallet still contained Stratton’s driver’s license and credit cards, which she had canceled.
“I was tickled to death we found the wallet,” said Batton. “We were surprised and shocked that she was at the park that day. We got to really do good in more than one way.”
Batton, a Coca-Cola driver for 20 years, brought his wife and two sons to the cleanup event, one of approximately 50 GAC events taking place in Lexington. “It’s really important to get your kids involved at a young age,” said Batton.
The Masterson Station Park event was part of the 2012 GAC and was sponsored by Coca-Cola, the Keep Lexington Beautiful Commission, Bluegrass PRIDE and the city’s Division of Parks and Recreation. The GAC is coordinated by the Keep Lexington Beautiful Commission.
“You never know what you will find during a cleanup,” said Patricia Knight, chair of the Keep Lexington Beautiful Commission. “Thanks to Coca-Cola and the Battons, the park was cleaned up and a stolen wallet returned to the owner. Now that is a great clean up!”
Other GAC events in Lexington this year have included a cleanup in Wolf Run creek by employees at Clark Material Handling Co., a watershed festival and cleanup in the Valley Park area and numerous cleanups by neighborhood groups, schools and churches.
The GAC is the nation’s largest community improvement program involving an estimated 3.9 million volunteers and participants.
For more information on the GAC in Lexington and the Keep Lexington Beautiful Commission, visit www.keeplexingtonbeautiful.com
About Keep Lexington Beautiful
Keep Lexington Beautiful, created by ordinance in 2010, is a 13-member group that focuses attention on litter prevention, beautification and community improvement, and waste reduction. Keep Lexington Beautiful’s mission is to engage individuals, businesses and organizations within Fayette County to take personal responsibility for improving our environment. For information on Keep Lexington Beautiful visit www.keeplexingtonbeautiful.com