Call it a win-win-win situation: The city of Hesperia got volunteers to clean up three illegal dump sites around the city, volunteers got a free pass to an amusement park and the Walt Disney Corporation got a whole lot of free publicity.


The city participated in Disney Parks' "Give a Day, Get a Day" promotion, which rewards volunteers in participating program with a one-day pass to one of their parks, including Disneyland, with a clean-up day held last Saturday.


"Last weekend was an amazing success. We had 156 participants show up at three sites," said Rachel Molina, a Senior Office Assistant for the city of Hesperia, and the person who spearheads the city's Volunteer Network program. "Everyone was really positive. The weather was cold, much like it was today, but everybody was bundled up. ... It couldn't have gone better, really."


Unlike normal clean-up days, when groups like the Kiwanis Club are assigned clean-up sites, the volunteers were united by only their desire for Disneyland tickets.


"They were just shocked at the amount of debris and trash that's dumped in the desert."


In the end, the volunteers collected seven bins full of mattresses, chairs, clothing, tables and trash.


Due to what Molina calls the "overwhelming response," the city is considering holding another volunteer opportunity through the Disney Parks program, probably in April. Sign-ups will not be opened up until closer to the actual date of the event.


"With all three different sites, they were each posted on different days, and they were all filled up within 12 hours," said Molina. "We had people signing up at 3 in the morning."


And as the speed of the sign-ups suggested, the chance to go to Disneyland for free meant a lot to many of the volunteers.


"We got so many stories from families who said that they had wanted to take their child or family to Disneyland for years, maybe for the first time, but could never do it," said Molina.


To find Give a Day, Get a Day volunteering opportunities, visit DisneyParks.com.


Beau Yarbrough can be reached at 760-956-7108 or at beau@hesperiastar.com. Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/Hesperia.Star