Waterway Cleanup draws 2,000 volunteers, removes 23 tons of trash March 18, 2015
More than 2,000 volunteers aged 2 to 90 came out to pick up trash from Broward County canals, beaches and waterways on Saturday, March 7 as part of the 38th annual Broward County Waterway Cleanup, the county’s largest and longest-running environmental event.
Volunteers pitched in by land and more than 100 boats as part of the event organized by the Marine Industries Association of South Florida and Marine Industry Cares Foundation and presented by the Florida Inland Navigation District. They removed 23 tons of trash, including a dinosaur (made of plastic), a punching bag and a message in a bottle.
“The turnout exceeded what we expected, and with the help of all of the volunteers, we were able to make a significant impact on the amount of trash in our waterways,” remarked MIASF public relations and marketing director Sharon Abramson. “Our waterways are the lifeblood of our community, and it’s important to do everything we can to keep them clean.”
Bimini Boatyard served as the site of the post-event celebration, the Trash Bash. Broward County Commissioner Chip LaMarca was on hand to thank volunteers and to congratulate the winners of the Short Story, Essay, Recycled Art and Friend of Nature scholarship contests. They are:
- Essay Contest ($500): Aaysha McCrae, 12th grader from Plantation
- Short Story Contest ($250): Victoria Sculion, 7th grader from Fort Lauderdale
- Runner up ($100): Sebastian Miranda, 7th grader from Fort Lauderdale
- Recycled Art Contest ($250): Sarah Anselme, 12th grader from Hollywood
- Runner up ($100): Brianna Grant, 12th grader from Coral Springs
- Friend of Nature Contest ($200): Sabrina Ruiz, 8th grader from Sunrise
All of the winners attend New River Middle School or South Broward High School, which both offer marine magnet programs. In addition to the Florida Inland Navigation District, sponsors included Broward County, the North Springs Improvement District, JM Family Enterprises, the Chappell Group, Trac Ecological, FlexSol, Cliff Berry Enterprises, Beard Marine, Complete Marine, Harbour Towne Marina, National Save the Sea Turtle Foundation, Gold Coast Marine Distributor, Frank and Jimmie’s Propeller, Dumpster King, Starbrite, Rush Roll-off and Recycling and Barefoot Wine and Bubbly. Cities that contributed to the cleanup included Fort Lauderdale, Oakland Park, Hallandale Beach, Deerfield Beach, Hollywood, Plantation, Coral Springs and Wilton Manors.
Thank you to all of the sponsors and volunteers who helped make the cleanup a success and helped keep our waterways clean!