Well it's official, our volunteers are rockstars! This year the Great American Cleanup was on March 11. Hundreds of volunteers helped pick up trash throughout Pasco County in various locations such as Crystal Springs Preserve, Lacoochee, Dade City, Hudson, New Port Richey, Werner-Boyce Salt Springs Park in Port Richey and Anclote Gulf Park in Holiday. Many groups participated on foot, but there were also volunteers in boats.
This year 516 volunteers picked up 28.13 tons of trash, which equals 56,260 pounds. Along with litter they picked up tires, car parts and mattresses. The Great American Cleanup is a Keep Pasco Beautiful event, but we would not be able to do it without our sponsors and partners. Thank you to our wonderful sponsors: Nestle Waters, Covanta Pasco, CDM Smith, Surfing's Evolution and Preservation Foundation, JD Parker & Sons, Waste Connections, and Republic Services. The success of the event is also due to the collaboration and assistance of Pasco County departments such Recycling and Education, Road and Bridge, Parks and Natural Resources and Utilities Environmental Services, and the support that we receive from the Florida Department of Transportation.
I was personally at the cleanups in the Holiday parks along with Strauber Memorial. That is an extremely environmentally sensitive area, and it was so disturbing to see people pulling out boxes of tile and other remodeling supplies that someone had dumped in the mangroves. Who would do that and why would you pitch a tire into the mangroves? The positive side of it all was that the amazing children that were volunteering cared so much about our world and were just as upset over the trash. Hopefully that generation can put an end to the litter issues. It’s an easy problem to solve with personal responsibilty, don’t litter.