If you're ever in downtown Portland, there's a new bright green street sweeper that may catch your eye, and it's named Meryl Sweep.

Portland Downtown is a non-profit Downtown Improvement District that began in 1992 to represent the business, cultural, and residential community of downtown Portland, Maine. Its mission, according to its website, is "to create a cleaner, safer, well-managed downtown so that Portland can successfully compete as an environment in which to live, do business, shop, and visit."

That first item, "cleaner," is where this new street sweeper comes in.

Portland Downtown held a contest to name this new street sweeper that will be used to keep things clean downtown. The winner of the contest not only gets the honor of naming the street sweeper, but also receives a $50 gift card to the downtown Portland business of their choice.

The winning name chosen by Jen and Chris (last names not included) was Meryl Sweep, named with actress Meryl Streep in mind.

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I'm doubting that Ms. Streep realizes that Portland, Maine, now has a street sweeper sort of named in her honor. Sure, it's not an Academy Award. But still, it's a big deal for the people who work and shop in downtown Portland.

There were some great names from the runner-ups too, and almost every one of them was punny.

  • Sweepy Todd
  • Sweep Caroline
  • The Green Monstah
  • Orlando Broom

So if you happen to be walking in downtown Portland and see a big green street sweeper coming your way, give Meryl Sweep a wave.

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