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Local man who picks up garbage every day is 'Orillia's best citizen'

'I just like it when everybody is able to come down to the park and enjoy it because there is no litter,' says Brian Stanton, who always 'greets people with a great big smile'
Brian Stanton 10-21-21
Brian Stanton spends every morning cleaning up garbage around downtown Orillia and the waterfront. He calls it his job, but does it out of the goodness of his heart as a volunteer.

Editor's Note: This is the second of a series of 10 weekly articles, that will appear each Thursday, as part of the Be Kind campaign, an initiative spearheaded by Orillia's Emergency Management Committee.

Every morning, no matter the weather, you can find Brian Stanton wearing his black and yellow safety vest and his Port of Orillia ball cap in and around downtown Orillia.

You will also notice that he is focused on picking up garbage and making the entire downtown area spotless and free of any kind of litter. It's his way to show kindness to his community. 

Orillia District Chamber of Commerce (ODCC) managing director and Port of Orillia harbour master Allan Lafontaine says Stanton makes Orillia a better place.

“He does it seven days a week and he’s dedicated to cleaning up the waterfront, all of downtown, and even over by Tudhope Park,” said Lafontaine, who is amazed at Stanton's work ethic and passion.

“I think Brian is Orillia’s best citizen; they just don’t make them any better than him. Not only does he pick up trash, but he always greets people with a great big smile and he’s always the first to compliment people.”

Stanton says he never takes a day off from cleaning up Orillia, noting, for him, it’s his full-time job.

“A lot of people like to litter, and I don’t like it when people litter,” he said.

“It’s my job. I get up every day at five in the morning, I come down here to the park and I fill garbage bags with any garbage that I see.”

Stanton spends six to seven hours each day picking up litter in downtown Orillia, and often cleans up around the Colborne Street Tim Hortons before heading home to his Peter Street apartment where he lives with his cat.

Stanton says it gives him pride when he overhears people complimenting the cleanliness of Orillia’s boardwalk and waterfront parks.

“I like when people notice when it’s clean, and I don’t like it when some people make a mess,” he said.

Recently, Orillia Mayor Steve Clarke recognized the Park Street Collegiate Institute graduate's efforts.

“He came and talked to me once, it was awesome. I see him on television all the time, so I think about that almost every day,” he said.

“I just like it when everybody is able to come down to the park and enjoy it because there is no litter. I want everyone to come and enjoy it when it’s looking its best.”

Do you know of an act of kindness or generosity that should be shared with the community? If so, please email your idea and contact information to dave@orilliamatters.com.