Helping schools is in church's 'jean genes'

Posted Online: May 02, 2014, 5:00 am
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By Leon Lagerstam,
MOLINE -- Bethany Baptist Church members replaced regular worship services last Sunday to hold what they call a "Blue Jean Sunday."

About 90 people broke into teams and went to Garfield, Ericsson and Butterworth elementary schools to do mulching, raking, trash pick up and weed-whacking, associate pastor Steve Ott said.

"It was a great turnout. We had about 25 people at each site," he said, adding that other members delivered cookies to firefighters and police officers.

"The rain held off and we were able to get everything done," Mr. Ott said. "We've done these Blue Jean Sundays for about five years, and we've developed a relationship with school administrators and principals at those three schools."

The schools are in close proximity of the church, at 700 35th Ave. Place.

"They are part of our community," he said. "We love being a part of Moline. For us, this is just about giving back to the community, no strings attached. We know how schools have been hurting financially and how some are closing soon, but it doesn't deter us from wanting to make the schools a beautiful place for kids to come to."

The project also reminds people how "God has called us to serve with a purpose but with no strings," Mr. Ott said.

Delivering cookies to police and firefighters was added to this year's Blue Jean Sunday plans, "because we just thought it would be nice to go out and give those folks some fresh baked goods."

The church will host a Quad Cities Law Enforcement Memorial Service from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Sunday.

For information about Bethany Baptist, call 309-764-3041, or visit


Local events heading

  Today is Thursday, Oct. 2, the 275th day of 2014. There are 90 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The ladies have adopted the fashion of wearing representations of insects in the flowers on their bonnets. Some look very natural.
1889 -- 125 years ago: T.F. Cary, former Rock Island alderman, has accepted a position as salesman for a Chicago wallpaper house and plans to move to that city.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Work on the new telephone building on 18th Street between 6th and 7th avenues is progressing rapidly.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Rock Island's new theater at 3rd Avenue and 19th Street will have a name significant of its location. The "Rocket" is scheduled to open Thanksgiving Day.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Two of Rock Island's newest water towers were vandalized last night, including the one at 38th Street and 31st Avenue, where police took five Moline boys into custody about 9 p.m..
1989 -- 25 years ago: Some of us who live in the Quad-Cities take the Mississippi River for granted, or at least we used to. But the river is not taken for granted by our visitors. And most Quad-Citians are realizing the importance of the river to this area as increased emphasis is placed on tourism.

(More History)