Missouri River cleanup begins Saturday morning

Missouri National Recreational River is proud to announce the inaugural Clay County Park Missouri River Cleanup will take place on Saturday, Sept. 14.

The National Park Service is seeking volunteers to meet at the Clay County boat ramp area at 8 a.m. for registration, coffee and doughnuts. All volunteers will be issued official T-shirts. Boats from the National Park Service and partner agencies will transport volunteers to and from cleanup sites along the river.

Many volunteers will have the opportunity to visit Goat Island, the largest island left on the Middle Missouri River or other unique natural areas along the river.

The cleanup will comb various sandbars and areas adjacent to the river for trash that has accumulated over the years due to both natural and human factors. The cleanup will end at noon with a lunch of hot dogs, chips and cold drinks.
Missouri National Recreational River Park Ranger and Cleanup Coordinator Dugan Smith said, “The park is expanding cleanup efforts to communities all along the river corridor this year. We want to foster river stewardship among residents of Clay County and Vermillion. By taking part in a cleanup, citizens get a chance to improve the natural environment while also experiencing the Wild and Scenic Missouri. The stretches of the river close to Clay County Park are as close as one will find to the pre-development Missouri River. Helping protect and preserve this part of the river is a worthy goal that can bring the community together. This cleanup will be the first of what is going to become an annual event.”
Volunteers should wear clothing appropriate for the weather and sturdy, closed-toe shoes. Sunscreen and insect repellent are recommended; bring gloves or gloves will be provided. Participants under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

More information is available by contacting Park Ranger Dugan Smith by phone at (605) 665-0209 or by e-mail at Dugan_Smith@nps.gov.

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