Thursday, April 29, 2010

Great Lakes CleanUp

A 50 degree overcast morning was the start to a cleanup effort on the Black River.
This is the waterway that runs through lower Michigan and empties into Lake Macatawa and eventually
into Lake Michigan at the Holland harbor.

There was a crew there to help the Macatawa Greenway clean up the river.  Canoes, gloves and trash bags  were provided to help accomplish the task.  The majority of the volunteers took to their canoes and four of us launched our SUP's in hopes of helping out.  We focused on the area east of Windmill Island and paddled up river to check for sites that needed to be cleaned.  We turned back downstream when the river turned shallow and rocky and began the downstream paddle in search of any debris.

The majority of the trash consisted of plastic bags and bottles and snagged fishing line, etc.  There was some great efforts to remove a couple car tires, a steel barrel, lawn chairs and numerous spent shotgun cartridges.

The effort ended back at the launch point with about 18-20 bags of garbage that got properly disposed of.

The simple lack of regard for a great waterway is hard to take.  The large number of people that come to this area and use it's waters doesn't compare to the 15-18 people that we had out that day to lend a hand cleaning up.  Hopefully we can shed some light on the problem that our waters are facing and get more and more people to spread the word about keeping things clean.  Lets focus on making people aware that they can be a part of the solution and not just a part of destroying our Great Lakes and waterways.

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