Littering is so 1972. Yet, people still toss their cups, cheeseburger wrappers and “trucker bombs” along the road (if you’re unfamiliar with the latter, look it up on the Net).

Even using prison labor to collect trash, there’s more garbage on North Carolina highways than can be picked up. And this is where you can improve your karma: Adopt-a-Highway.

Of the more than 78,000 miles of state highway in North Carolina, 5,551 have been adopted since 1988. Under the program, you or your organization agrees to collect litter a minimum of every three months along a two-mile stretch of road. The N.C. Department of Transportation provides the safety vests, protective gloves and bags for trash and recycling. The state picks up the filled bags. You get your name on a green sign and the satisfaction of a clean roadside. Info: Go to and click on “Programs.”