Over 30 tennis balls were pulled out of the pond at Lakeshore Park during last year’s cleanup along with plenty of toys and food containers
Whitfield County, Murray County and Polk County residents are invited to participate in the 29th Annual Conasauga River Watershed Cleanup event on Saturday, Oct. 28, to help clean one of nine locations in the watershed.
This event will be held on United Way’s Make a Difference Day. As volunteers remove thousands of pounds of litter from our waterways, they will be making a difference for both people and wildlife. The Conasauga is a popular spot to kayak, canoe, fish, and snorkel in. And it is also a major source of water for drinking and industry. So, it is important to keep our river clean and healthy because it leads to a healthy community, said officials.
A watershed is the area of land that drains water running off it into the same body of water. In our area that body of water is the Conasauga River and that area of land, the Conasauga watershed, is about 730 square miles in size. The land and river are connected, so that what happens on the land often affects what happens in the river. For example, fast food wrappers or a soda bottle thrown out of a car window or dropped in a parking lot can be carried by ditches and storm drains into streams and river. The trash found during the annual cleanup event is the result of littering, illegal dumping, and accidental loss of items due to unsecured loads on vehicles and may include packaging, tires and more. At the last clean-up, volunteers removed 15,996 pounds of trash. By cleaning the watershed, volunteers help protect and restore the Conasauga for us and future generations.
The Conasauga is one of the six most biologically diverse freshwater river systems in the country. It supports 24 endangered species, and a dozen other imperiled species like the Southern Pigtoe mussel and the Conasauga Logperch, which is a fish found in no other place in the world. Litter and water pollution have a negative impact on the quality of life of these animals, reducing their oxygen levels and food sources.
The Conasauga River Watershed Cleanup, part of Georgia’s statewide cleanup effort called Rivers Alive, helps remove trash that was not taken care of responsibly from streams and river.
Volunteers for this year’s clean-up event can choose to participate at one of the nine sites. At each site, volunteers will register and can expect to spend a few hours in the morning picking up trash. Volunteers should wear sturdy shoes or boots, long pants, and long sleeve shirts. Gloves, trash bags, water, and snacks will be provided at each site. And, as a thank you, volunteers will receive a T-shirt and, while supplies last, the choice of fanny pack, hand sanitizer, or patch commemorating this year’s event.
To download the event flyer with directions to the nine locations visit www.keepdaltonwhitfieldbeautiful.org. For more details, call (706) 278-5001 or follow Keep Dalton-Whitfield Beautiful on Facebook to join and share the event listing.