Volunteers put a huge dent in removing debris from beach, bay and inland locations during a previous Creek to Bay Cleanup. This year’s massive event takes place April 26. Photo by Don Balch
I Love A Clean San Diego’s (ILACSD) signature event, the Creek to Bay Cleanup, is gearing up for its 12th installment on Saturday, April 26 to help restore the pristine nature of the region’s waterways and beaches.
The event will run from 9 a.m. to noon as part of the national Great American Cleanup, including cleanup sites in Ocean Beach, Pacific Beach, La Jolla, Mission Beach and Mission Bay. Thousands of volunteers will gather at more than 90 coastal and inland sites around San Diego County to help preserve the local environment by cleaning and beautifying these outdoor areas.
Twelve years ago, ILACSD hosted its first Creek to Bay Cleanup with only 27 cleanup sites and 2,000 volunteers. The event has continued to grow and is now one of the biggest cleanup events of the year in San Diego County. In 2013, about 6,000 volunteers removed 100 tons of debris from their local communities during the three-hour event. The removal of trash is not the only focus of this annual event. Volunteers will also perform storm-drain stenciling, landscaping and graffiti removal. ILACSD hopes to engage thousands of San Diego residents to beautify and restore the local environment.
“As I Love A Clean San Diego celebrates its 60th anniversary year, it is more important than ever that our events, such as the Creek to Bay Cleanup, work to build the next generation of environmental stewards,” said Pauline Martinson, executive director of I Love A Clean San Diego. “Through these cleanup efforts, volunteers young and old will be empowered to take action in preserving our local environment.”
The Creek to Bay Cleanup is one of a handful of community engagement projects coordinated by ILACSD each year. The organization has been mobilizing volunteers around beautification and pollution prevention projects since 1954. In fact, with all ILACSD events combined, volunteers remove an astounding one million pounds of debris every two years.
At the Creek to Bay Cleanup, cleanup sites will include beaches, bays, canyons, creek beds and urban areas throughout San Diego County from Oceanside to Tijuana, as well as Ocean Beach to Alpine. While beach and bay locations are always popular for participants, ILACSD organizers point out many other inland locations are in desperate need of help, too, because there is a strong emphasis on protecting inland communities and preventing marine pollution before it reaches local waterways.
LOCAL CLEANUP SITES
• Clairemont — Mount Etna Canyon; Tecolote Canyon
• La Jolla — Windansea Beach; La Jolla Shores;
• Mission Bay — Crown Point Shores South (volunteer list filled); Fiesta Island; Santa Clara Point; Ski Beach; South Shores
• Mission Beach — Belmont Park
• Ocean Beach — Dog Beach; Veterans’ Plaza
• Pacific Beach — lower Rose Creek at Mission Bay High; Tourmaline Beach
For a complete list of cleanup sites and to register to volunteer, visit www.CreektoBay.org. For more information, to volunteer or donate, visit www.cleansd.org, or call (619) 291-0103. Connect with them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.