When I heard that thirty-nine volunteers ignored the rain in September 2013 to collect over 100 pounds of garbage and debris I was very impressed. That is some real commitment to be in the soaking wet and picking up garbage. In fact, it could be considered punishment, if it weren’t for the fact that it was some wonderfully committed people just making a difference on a single beach on a single day.
In 1993, the international beach cleaning event was written up in the Guinness Book of World Records as the “largest garbage collection”. On the single September day in 2013, 50,000 volunteers cleaned up 700 sites in California alone. The garbage from that clean-up day weighed 1,345,778 pounds, all of trash and beach debris. It is crazy to think that there is that much trash on beaches every year!
On September 20th, 2014, your family can go help clean-up a beach near you. There are clean-up days schedule all over the world, so if you live by water, you should be able to find one locally. The clean-up days in California are sponsored by the National Parks Service, and when the California events are combined with the international events on the same day, the clean-up days have grown to be the largest marine volunteer event ever created.
One of the events planned this year is the Point Reyes National Seashore with the California Coastal Commission. They will be doing a clean-up of the Point Reyes beach on Saturday, September 20th, 2014 from 10 am until 1 pm. This event will be an opportunity for you to pack a lunch, the family, some sunscreen and water to go make a beach clean. They say the café’ is closed, so you’ll want to make sure to bring snacks, at the very least. You are probably going to have a very hungry family after they do all that good work.
If you aren’t near Point Reyes National, you can go to the Ocean Conservancy website and find out which parks and beaches near you are participating in that day. If you don’t find an event near you, there are directions on how you can create an event. Let us know how successful your day was!