BAB(Big Apple Beautifiers)'s Next Volunteer Street Clean-UP litter/trash in Brooklyn, New York Is...


Polish the Big Apple!

Create A Happy Heart!!

Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Cleaning Project

Volunteers & Sponsors Needed!

Making A Prototype of Collaboration and Love in Your Neighborhood!!

Date & time:  Sunday, APR. 21st, 9:50 am - noon:

Meet At:         Thomas VanDyke Gallery, (near Sunset Park, Japan Village)

      434 39th Street 
      Brooklyn, NY 11232
Subway D, N, R train, Get off at 36th Street, Walk 7 min. 

Japan Times & Kyodo covered our activiteis!!



can create a totally new, safe environment in your neighborhood. 

It makes you feel emotionally uplifted and happy. 

All of this is done in the spirit of

collaboration and community building.  Simply,


--Create a possibility of building a prototype of zero-garbage-emission society by practicing 4Rs (Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle)


Pick up and sweep the litter on the streets

Remove sticky gum sometimes. 

Wash the tools after cleaning.  Potluck Lunch will be provided for volunteers thereafter.


The litter on the streets can cause sanitary problems, ocean pollution, and global warming. 
The BAB is committed to the beautification of neighborhoods and protection of the environment through this cleaning activity, 
in the attitude of asking what you can do for the society, not asking what the society can do for you. 

There have been studies about the correlation between cleanliness and reducing crime rates.
There is also a connection with community cleanliness and serenity of mind of its inhabitants.
The BAB is committed to creating a friendly atmosphere with a smile, restoring clean images of the city, and building a prototype of a peaceful community here to be spread worldwide.

Cleaning is a great opportunity of rejuvenating your soul and mind, transforming your life for better to live a significant life according to Japanese traditional beliefs.  The BAB believes that it is a remarkable chance to seek self-improvement and personal growth, and to powerfully learn and nurture yourself for achieving the highest levels of awareness through this opportunity. 

Our Story: 

Big Apple Beautifiers founded in 2006 with friends of Terry Sato, the founder of this volunteering street cleanup, and originally started in West Village, Manhattan.
     They have been consecutively holding the activity up until now, and over 3600 volunteers in total have participated by 2020, collecting more than 3600 gallons of litter on the streets.

The most typical reactions from people when Terry started this street cleanup 15 years ago were:

"Who the heck are you?"
"You are insane!"
“You are sick!”

But they never gave up, and continued their volunteer activity with a smile for more than a decade. 

After their long years of practice, people's reception has been so different and changed to:

"Thank You"
"Finally I found you, guys! I was looking for you because I heard a lot about you!"

Terry heard similar feedback not from just one, but from many people.

Celebrating the 14th anniversary of BAB's foundation in September, 2020, was a real turnout for them.

Coincidentally, the neighbors in West Village, 7th Avenue South Alliance, did the Cleanup on the same day as the BAB did.  Not just one, other twelve block associations around the area including West Midtown, Chelsea, held the same street cleaning day around the weekend.  This movement seemed to steadily spread around in NY. That's awesome!!,

Supposedly, BAB's continuous effort was contagiously imprinted in people's minds, and,
then, it created the feeling of gratitude, and motivated them to plan the projects, and began cleaning their own areas.

After October, 2022, they moved the base to Brooklyn, and now work with Thomas Vandyke Gallery.

Contact:    Please email us to soujiny@gmail.com


Sponsors & Donaors:

     We acknowledge the monetary, material contributions from companies and individuals below:

Capital One BANK,      Nishimoto Trading Co. LT     Wasan, Brooklyn    Thomas Vandyke Gallery

One if by Land,             Two if by Sea

NY Mutual Trading Inc.,    Daiei Trading Co., Inc,       Maruto Noriten

         Fan Restaurant Supply,                AKI on West 4           Hakata Tonton

Varsano’s Chocolates                    Bajwa Gift Shop      Wasan

Jack Ancona,                               Birthday Suit,            

Founded by Terry Sato

posted by Terry Sato at 15:30| Comment(0) | TrackBack(0) | 日記 | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする


Celebrate the 17th Anniversary of its foundation! Big Apple Beautifiers, Street Cleanup Volunteer Activity. Now in Brooklyn.


BAB celebrated our 17th anniversary! - a milestone we reached thanks to all the volunteers helped us.

It hasn't always been easy, but working alongside passionate volunteers who share the same goals and mindset has made all the difference. Honestly, there were times when I doubted we would get here, but today’s sunny weather as we picked up litter reminded me of why we started this journey.

Here’s to aiming for at least another 3 years of beautifying the Big Apple together!

Thank you so much for your dedication and enthusiasm! The cleanup event is truly a rewarding experience that leaves you feeling amazing and inspired. The Big Apple Beautifiers meet every third Sunday at 10:00 AM at the Thomas Vandyke Gallery in Brooklyn. Our goal is to foster community spirit and enhance the beauty of our environment. Your unwavering support and love have been instrumental in the success of our 17-year-long monthly project. We deeply appreciate your involvement and look forward to many more years of collaboration!

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Seeing someone kind to others, people do the same, that is when people voluntarily began street cleanup

What brings people to good deeds?


Northwestern University in Illinois did an interesting comparative experiment to see what conditions can encourage people to be nice to others. 

In Case A, they simply set up a scene where a woman stood next to a car with a flat tire and asked for help.

In Case B, an additional car with a flat tire was set up about 400 m before the woman of Case A, where a lady was helped by a man replacing the tire for her.  This means that, in Case B, those who passed the road first see a scene of someone helping others, and then, see a woman seeking puncture help.  Both cases were closed when 1,000 cars passed by.

As a result, 35 cars for A, and 58 cars for B (after witnessing the virtuous act) stopped and offered help.

From this, Dr. James Brown, who conducted this study, concludes that people tend to "unconsciously think that they have to help others when they witness people helping others.

I think this also applies to our cleaning activities.

It has been 16 years since I continued this cleanup. From my experience and observation, the idea and attempts of maintaining the public cleanliness are now gradually but steadily well-known and widespread among people in New York areas.

Why is that?

Given the results of the above experiment, people tend to unconsciously think,'I have to do the same,' after they witness the scene of street cleanups.

In other words, by continuing our cleaning activities, we may be able to work unconsciously on people and naturally foster the awareness that they should maintain the cleanliness of the environment.

I have therefore determined that BAB will continue to carry out the cleaning activities no matter what obstacles may come to us.

posted by Terry Sato at 19:22| Comment(0) | TrackBack(0) | 日記 | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする


15th Anniversary! Big Apple Beautifiers, New York, Street Cleanup Volunteering, Stop littering

Amazing!  The 15th Anniversary of  BAB's foundation!!  Wow!! Thanks for all your love and support for the activity so far!!  I am so grateful!! After our mindful cleanup as usual, we will celebrate it all together! 

To Celebrate, the chef, Kaku-san, gave us Bluefin tuna
“Nakaochi” for the party.  Nakaochi, the flesh around fish ribs, of Bluefin tuna, will be scraped, and made to be hand-rolls or tuna rice bowls for you!

I would really appreciate their generosity!  Thank YOU, Kaku-san, Toshi-san!

Nakaochi (1).jpeg
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Big Apple Beautifiers' 14th Anniversary Celebration! The West Village NY has been transformed!

Big Apple Beautifiers hold the monthly CleanUP at a restaurant, "Wasan Brooklyn," every 3rd Sunday, starting from 8:50AM.
Please contact soujiny@gmail.com
Big Apple Beautifiers celebrated the 14th anniversary of their foundation on September, 2020.
September, 2020 BAB 14th anniversary.jpg
Many people around the West Village unexpectedly have been waiting for us and gave us some nice and warm-hearted words for acknowledging our street cleanup although it's been six month since the last time. So glad and grateful!

September2020, BAB 14th anniversary.jpgSeptember 2020 BAB 14th Aniversary Washington Square Park.jpg
Celebrating the 14th anniversary of the foundation is a really turnout for us.
Coincidentally, the neighbors, 7th Avenue South Alliance, did the Cleanup on the same day we did. Previously, 12 block associations did it last Saturday. This cleanup movement is steadily spread around in NY. That's awesome!!

This is a "thank you letter" for you and everyone supported us.
During this pandemic, people started thinking in a different way.

I already mentioned earlier, but 12 Block associations around West Village, West midtown, Chelsea areas did the clean-ups in September, 2020
20.pngClean-Up Day Saturday Sept 22.jpg20 .png

One motivation behind these actions is that people worried about keeping the public safety. But it is obvious that our group, Big Apple Beautifiers unconsciously influenced them through the continuous effort.

The most reactions I got from people when we started this project 14 years ago were:
"Who are you?"
"You are insane!"
“You are sick!” 

Supposedly, BAB's continuous cleaning activity was imprinted to people's mind, and it was contagious. It unconsciously made them motivated to clean their own areas. I would call it ’spiritual impact.’
The reason I would say that is because their attitude toward us now has been so different and changed to:

Not just saying,
"Thank You"
but also,
"Finally I found you, guys! I was looking for you because I heard a lot about you!"

I heard similar feedback not from just one, but from many people.
Then, with the feeling of gratitude in their minds, the situation we experience now triggered them, and let them plan the projects. This is what I interpreted.

At this 14th anniversary as a huge milestone of our journey, I am so pleased that I can share the above with you. I am so glad to continue this activity with you all. I am proud of you, and so much grateful for who you are, what you have done for us and the community. I also thank all my friends to support me!!
posted by Terry Sato at 09:03| Comment(0) | 日記 | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする


BAB celebrated the 13th Anniversary of its foundation!! What an accomplishment!!

   Big Apple Beautifiers celebrated the 13 years anniversary of its foundation today September 15th, 2019. We’ve been doing this volunteer street cleanup (also bathroom cleaning) in a detached way in a sense. No matter what people criticize us, or praised us, we have done what we wanted. I’ve never accomplished anything without your support and love. Our path will continue. Thanks again for your wonderful help!!
13th aniversary.jpg

I truly thank you for all the love and support that you have been giving the volunteers for the past 13 years on the street cleanup activity.

Our true worth can be measured 
By our appreciation and gratitude
For all of the kind deeds
Bestowed on us by others.
(By Okada Mokichi)
説明テリー.jpg食事風景.jpg終わった後のシェアリング.jpg13th anni  dinner.jpg

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12th Anniversary Celebration!!

Sunday September 16th at 9 am, was the day of the celebration for the 12th anniversary of BAB’s foundation.  The regular monthly cleaning for the West 4th Street, was nicely done, and the celebration began after the cleanup.

It was due to the passion and efforts of all the participants in the past 12 years.  Without them, we have never accomplished it.  I thank you all your support and love for our activity.

Upon the 12th anniversary, I reflect myself that it was a history of challenging myself.  In order to grow, you sometimes need to push yourself to try new things and reach your high goal. What have taken you here and now, would not necessarily get you further.  

Keep coming to the monthly cleanup might be a challenge for some of you.  Cleaning bathrooms, or taking the leadership role in your group could be another challenge.  Let's take this anniversary as a chance for you to grow, why don't you put yourself up to whatever you have never done before.  You would create infinite possibilities in your life by doing so.

Thanks again, for your wonderful challenge and support to make our environment clean and positive.

Terry Sato

2017.jpglast group pic.jpgTerry is happy too.jpg

Birthday girls.jpghappy faces.jpgspecial lunch.jpgsepcial lunch delicious.jpg

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Celebrated the 11th anniversary of our foundation!! Love you all!!

Sunday 17th at 9 am, please join us in the cleanup around the West 4th Street! 

Thanks to your all support and love, this Sunday(Sep. 17, 2017), we have celebrated the 11th anniversary of its foundation ($10 each for the party afterward)!!  I really thank you!  I love you all!!


Special NOTE:

It's a special day for us this Sunday, the 11th anniversary!  Expect, before start cleaning, that good things will come to you!!  They are coming either in spiritual or physical ways.   Cleaning is not the purpose of our activity.  Our purpose is to make everyone happy through the clean-up!  Also, learning something from the cleanup to grow yourself is vital for getting your happiness!!

One advance notice for October meeting:
The free lunch will not be served only for the October.  We want to give the chef day-off, and take his burden off from his shoulders.  In this way, he can also join us in the cleanup (this is his original purpose to join our group), or just relax during the activity.   

Thanks to many of your love and support, the number of participants is increasing recently.  Thus, the amount of lunch is increasing as well.  Making the lunch for over 30 people by one person is much tougher than you imagine.  Please also consider that he has to work until 2-4am after the midnight, especially, Saturday night just before our activity.  We will do this time to time, maybe every other three or four months period.

Pot-luck lunch will be planned instead in October!!
Please bring your own foods with a bit extra amount.  It is not MUST, but free-will act.  You don't have to bring a big amount of lunch for everyone.  All you have to do is to share what you have with them.  

"Acknowledgement" is the key for the lunch.  We started the system because I just wanted to appreciate all the participant for the volunteer work.  By bringing your own lunch and share it with them,  we can acknowledge each other for being so loving, supporting, and helpful for the community.

I believe that this can change the society.  BAB is the place to practice the principle that making other happy makes yourself truly happy in return!!

One time, the previous chef, Koji said to me, when he accepted my idea of giving a free lunch to participants after the cleaning,

"I am very happy and feel honored to serve you.  Giving is more rewarding than you think.  At a glance, it may seem to be sacrifice.  But it will definitely return to you later in an unexpected way as gift.  That's what I believe."

It was true.  Koji had been making the free lunch for us for last 5 years, and then, finally, his dream came true.  He got his own restaurant and opened it early this year, 2017 as you might know.  

If you have such higher intention for higher cause, please help us help the chef Daisuke, and let us practice the principle of the universal truth of love.

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Big Apple Beautifiers (BAB) Celebrates the 10th Anniversary of its Foundation, volunteer, no litter anymore on the streets

Photo august 2016.jpg

Big Apple Beautifiers (BAB) Celebrates the 10th Anniversary of its Foundation.

Big Apple Beautifiers (BAB) has been actively cleaning the litter on the streets in the West Village, NY for last ten years. The community hardly accepted the idea and activity at the beginning; however, observing their long time consistent selfless contribution people around the area now started acknowledging them, and loving to help and support them.

It is BAB's appreciation to have this anniversal celebration with those who have been supportive and helpful. This party is also an opportunity to show their refreshed commitment of creating a happy heart in the community on this historical milestone.

Anyone interested in this idea and activity are welcome to join. The celebration will be held soon after their regular cleaning activity.


Date & Time: Sun. Sep. 18th, 9 am -12:30 pm
Place: “Hakata Tonton”
    (61 Grove St. New York, NY)Bleecker St. & 7th Ave.

Bring:Plastic bags, and gloves, 

Fee: $10


What to do:Cleaning Streets around West 4th & Cleaning bathrooms at the restaurant

<Please contact: >
soujiny@gmail.com ask Terry 

In July 2009, JAPAN TIMES covered the story of BAB's volunteer activity.

In March, 2014,  Saturday Morning News Program, "Japan-wonderful"  at Japan's major TV Network, FUJI TV broadcasted the story of BAB's activity.

In 2012,  one of the English textbooks for high-school students in Japan picked up the article of BAB's activity in New York, as an English reading material to improve their reading comprehension and study English Grammar.

Our English blog is:↓

Enjoy our YouTube↓
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History and Objectives of Big Apple Beautifiers

March.2015 BAB photo.jpgApril 2015 BAB photo.jpg

“Polish the Big Apple! Create a Happy Heart!!”


Big Apple Beautifiers was established in 2006 by highly motivated Japanese volunteers, environmentalists and Japanese restaurant owners as a community building project with the intention of beautifying the city of New York (Big Apple) by sweeping street litter and cleaning public restrooms.  The slogan is “Polish the Big Apple! Create a Happy Heart!”  On September in 2015, BAB will celebrate its 9th anniversary. Read more about BAB’s 8th anniversary here:


The BAB volunteers meet monthly, every third Sunday. The joyous and careful cleaning activity lasts from 9am to 11:30am, focusing on the area adjacent to West 4th Street and Christopher St. subway stations. Approximately 20 - 30 volunteers pitch in.  Hakata Tonton, a celebrated Japanese restaurant in the West Village of NY, is the base of activity. The main BAB website is:


Reflecting upon the early days, BAB had difficulty being warmly accepted by the neighborhood. The community did not immediately understand BAB. People gave the volunteers weird looks, and even sometimes intentionally threw away cigarette butts in front of the nose of volunteers.  

Continuing the activity patiently and with enthusiasm, however, BAB gradually began to receive friendly attention and positive feedback. BAB naturally attracted other volunteers who share the same values and intentions for society.  Some American neighbors who care about the environment and community have recently joined and continued supporting the activity.  

The media took notice of BAB’s happy and committed activity.  In 2012, a school textbook publishing company contacted the group, and the episodes of BAB’s activity were introduced in an English textbook for students studying English at junior high schools in Japan. For coverage see: 


In July, 2009,“Japan Times,”one of the major English newspapers in Japan, covered BAB’s story.  A free-community Japanese paper in NY called “Japion”picked up the cleaning activity in their article on October 5, 2007.  Also, Fuji TV, one of the major Japanese broadcasts, introduced BAB’s activity on the TV program called “Mezamashi-Doyoubi (Early Morning Saturday News)”on March 1, 2014.

<Three Main Objectives>

1. Protect the environment, especially fish in the ocean by removing litter.

It is a fact that the amount of garbage daily produced from NYC is about 50,000 tons, equivalent to the frame of the Empire State Building.  Much of it goes to other States of America, such as Virginia, and some of it is shipped all the way to our neighbors in South America.  It is reported that the litter directly going from the streets to the ocean is mistakenly swallowed by fish in ocean, and it suffocates the fish to death.  We all should be aware of these facts about the environment.  We would like to, therefore, create a possibility of building a prototype of zero-garbage emission society by practicing 4Rs (Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle), particularly, sweeping litter away from the streets which helps reducing and recycling the garbage.

2. Share the Japanese traditional value that can change your life.

It is believed that in the Edo Period (1600-1867), all the public streets in the Edo City (Tokyo) were like corridors connected to the Edo Castle, thus people living in the town should keep it clean all the time.  This belief became tradition and Japanese people habitually clean the public streets even today.  Also, in Japan, cleaning is a way of spiritual training for Buddhist monks and Shinto priests, and it is a beautiful way of changing your life.  Through BAB’s cleaning activity, the participants told amazing stories such as encountering a person to be married, or opening up a great business chance…etc.

3. Create a totally new, happy life in NYC

Street cleanup can contribute to the creation of a totally new, safe environment in your neighborhood that makes you feel emotionally uplifted and happy.  A correlation between cleanliness and reducing crime rates has been studied.  There is also a connection with community cleanliness and serenity of mind in inhabitants.

All of this is done in the spirit of collaboration and community building.  Simply IT IS FUN!!  

Facebook Group


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