Volunteers needed for Saturday's coastal cleanup


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The city of Jacksonville's Keep Jacksonville Beautiful Commission needs residents to participate in Saturday's 2013 Florida Coastal Cleanup event.

This event, which will provide volunteers with an opportunity to help beautify the city's shorelines, is part of the Ocean Conservancy's Annual International Coastal Cleanup -- said to be the world's largest effort to help protect oceans, lakes and rivers.

Each year, hundreds of thousands of volunteers from around the world spend a few hours removing trash and debris from beaches, lakes and rivers, keeping track of every piece of trash they find. Ocean Conservancy uses that information to produce an annual snapshot of the marine debris problem. In 2012, more than 550,000 people picked up more than 10 million pounds of trash along 20,000 miles of coastline in 27 countries. More than 21,000 pounds of that litter and debris were picked up around Duval County by 746 volunteers who donated 1,583 hours during last year's event, which spanned four hours.

Keep Jacksonville Beautiful coordinates Jacksonville volunteers clean and protect the environment by eliminating debris that injures wildlife, contaminates beaches and waterways, and threatens boater safety.

  • Local volunteers are needed to join this effort and can be part of a scientific study of marine litter by recording results on data cards that will be provided.
  • Advance registration is not required. Site captains will register volunteers and provide bags and gloves at the sites listed below.
  • This event provides an opportunity for students to satisfy community service requirements. Service hour certificates will be available from site captains.

Coastal Cleanup site locations

Oceanfront locations - 7 to 9 a.m.:

  • Beach Boulevard - at the ocean
  • Atlantic Boulevard - at the ocean
  • 16th Avenue South - at the ocean
  • Jacksonville Beach Pier - 503 1st Street North

Various locations - 9 to 11 a.m.

  • Blue Cypress Park - 4012 University Boulevard North
  • Castaway Island Preserve - 2885 San Pablo Road South
  • County Dock Boat Ramp - 11964 Mandarin Road
  • Next to Walter Jones Memorial Park
  • Ft. Caroline National Memorial - 12713 Fort Caroline Road
  • Helen Cooper Floyd Park (Little Jetties) - 3600 State Road A1A
  • Hogans Creek - 314 Palmetto Street (parking behind Jacksonville Historical Society - Site not suitable for children)
  • Huguenot Memorial Park - 10980 Heckscher Drive
  • Intracoastal Waterway Boat Ramp - 2510 2nd Avenue North (Site not suitable for children)
  • Little Talbot Island State Park - 12157 Heckscher Drive
  • NS Mayport Jetties Pavilion #3
  • Bon Homme Richard Street (across from Damage Control Wet Trainer Facility - volunteers must have base access or arrange base access)
  • Joe Carlucci Boat Ramp - 8414 Heritage River Road
  • Boat Ramp 1 mile off of Heckscher Drive, Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park (Meet at Dolphin Plaza)
  • Northbank Riverwalk - 221 Riverside Avenue (parking on Jackson Street & behind YMCA)
  • Reddie Point Preserve - 4499 Yachtsman Way
  • Tillie K. Fowler Regional Park - 7000 Roosevelt Boulevard

Participants must be at least 18 years old or accompanied by an adult. For their safety, volunteers should also:

  • Wear sturdy footwear, gloves, insect repellent and sun protection
  • Wear safety vests or bright colors when working roadside
  • Be alert for slippery wet surfaces or wildlife
  • Do not go into the water (river, creeks, the ocean, tributaries or ponds)
  • Bring drinking water and avoid overexertion; drink plenty of liquids
  • Do not remove or handle hazardous substances
  •  Call 911 for emergencies