by Scott Cameron – Environment Chair for the Riverside Estates Civic Association
We had beautiful weather and an impressive haul: 122 bags of trash. More than fifty people volunteered to help clean the creek and woods, and we enjoyed creek access with at least five volunteer boats. The trash included plastic bottles, Styrofoam, tires, paint cans, a hard hat, aluminum beverage cans, metal foil food wrappers, and glass bottles. A surprisingly large (and heavy) stack of construction material, comprised of wood, plastic, and rusty metal was ‘harvested’ along with a considerable amount of plastic drop sheet/tarpaulin. Other trophies included an impressively large plastic sandbox cover, a 4 x 4 foot wooden shipping/storage pallet, and a five-gallon plastic water-cooler reservoir.
Then, on Sunday evening, Judy Joyce invited her church youth group from Aldersgate to come and help pick up trash at Riverside Park on the George Washington Parkway, and walked over to the stone bridge, where Little Hunting Creek enters the Potomac. It was the mother lode of all trash. In an hour, they picked up over 16 bags of trash. The kids were all teenagers, students at either Mount Vernon or West Potomac and they really did enjoy it. They all said they would do it again, even before next year’s clean up. Judy served them dinner afterwards, so it was a great outing for the kids, enjoyed by all.
The enthusiasm, cooperation, dedication, neighborliness, civic spirit, courtesy, and good humor of our volunteers was great. Thank you everyone for your contributions to our community and natural environment. Special thanks to Allen Davis, Tom Fahy, Mort Isler, Tom Meyers, Barry Spangler, Judy Joyce, Rex Reiley and Greg Benitez for allowing your houses to be volunteer staging areas and trash collection points.