Adopt-A-Spot

Thank you for your interest in the City of Dubuque's Adopt-A-Spot program. Whether you're an individual, business, school, civic organization, or neighborhood group, the Adopt-A-Spot program is a simple way to volunteer to help keep our community clean and beautiful. We accommodate a wide variety of volunteer interests and goals.


Participants adopt a public space such as a street, waterway, park, or storm drain and make a commitment to regularly clean and maintain the spot for no less than one year. Adopted spots must be on City of Dubuque property or right-of-way. Typical activities may include removing litter, reporting graffiti, keeping storm drains clear, landscape maintenance, habitat restoration, and more.

Pick a Spot



First, identify an area you are interested in adopting! City staff will do their best to accommodate requests, and will also take into account other volunteer groups, planned maintenance, and other circumstances before approving an Adopt-A-Spot location.

How It Works



Volunteers agree to pick up litter a minimum of two times yearly, or as often as necessary. We ask that the work be performed during daylight hours, in a satisfactory, safe and professional manner, and adult supervision is required at the work site when volunteers or employees are 18 years of age or younger. Telephone notice to the appropriate city official(s), one week in advance, of intention to start work activities on the roadway right-of-way, is required. If needed, the City will provide pickup materials and arrange of the disposal of trash, yard waste, and other materials collected.

Volunteer Guidelines



General Conduct
• Always be respectful and courteous to fellow volunteers, property neighbors, and the general public.
• Never make unauthorized changes to City property or right-of way, including landscaping.

General Safety

• Wear appropriate clothing, footwear, sunscreen, and eye protection.
• For emergencies, call 911.
• Always use the appropriate tools for the job, to ensure safety.
• Pay special attention to children volunteering. Never allow children to play with tools or to use sharp tools.

Traffic Safety
• Stay out of the street whenever possible.
• Cross streets at signals or crosswalks, not mid-block.
• If working near traffic, wear a bright reflective work vest or bright-colored clothing.
• Work vests can be obtained with prior notice through the City of Dubuque Public Works Department by calling 563.589.4250.

Debris Removal
• Cleanup supplies and materials can be obtained with prior notice through the City of Dubuque Public Works Department by calling 563.589.4250.
• Always sweep, rake, or shovel glass. Never pick up sharp objects with your hands.
• Never touch suspected hazardous waste such as unknown materials, needles, and automotive fluids.
• Report hazardous waste in the public right of way to 563-589-4415.
• Separate collected materials into green waste, garbage, and recycling.
• Arrange for disposal of waste by contacting your designated City staff contact person.

Get Started!



Ready to adopt a spot? Click the link below to request a spot and complete the Adopt-A-Spot program assignment and agreement form. After the form is submitted, City staff will follow up with you to confirm your Adopt-A-Spot location, provide you with safety information, and determine the need for cleanup supplies and/or waste disposal.

Adopt-A-Spot Assignment & Agreement Form