Adopt a Highway: Cabins led to family highway cleanup

Adopt a Highway: Cabins led to family highway cleanup

By Caroline Carpenter / ADOT Communications
December 4, 2019

This Adopt a Highway story begins in 1959, when Arthur “Busty” Lewis Perry and his son Wayne Hill Perry began building a cabin at Hawley Lake.

Arthur and his son Wayne owned the cabin until the 1980s and often brought Wayne’s kids to the White Mountains. Wayne’s son, Chris Perry, now owns a cabin in Greer and takes his young sons, Elmer and Arthur, to the mountains. Chris hopes to teach them about caring for our forests.

Chris first learned about ADOT's Adopt a Highway program more than 20 years ago when he worked for the Arizona Mountain Inn in Flagstaff and employees regularly gathered to clean their Adopt a Highway mile.

Those cleanups stuck with Chris. In 2018 Chris and his brother Peter adopted mile 4-5 along State Route 473. That mile honors Chris and Peter’s father and grandfather.

This past June, Chris and his brother surprised their dad by driving him to the highway marker. It was the first time Wayne Perry had seen his name on the sign and learned his kids had adopted a highway in his honor.

Chris said, “My father was very pleased with the sign and the idea of keeping this scenic highway clean. He was proud to see the sign and I think he knows it will be there for some time. My grandfather, Arthur, also loved the White Mountains and was an avid fisherman. I think he would have been very happy with what we’ve done.”

The Perrys plan to clean their mile for many years to come and encourage others to consider adopting their own highway segment.

“To anyone who is thinking about adopting a highway, I say go for it. It’s important work, whether on a scenic highway or on an average stretch of road between two points,” said Chris Perry.

The Adopt a Highway website explains how you can adopt and will show you which sections are available for adoption.

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