Sunday, April 3, 2011

Help Clean Up Rock Creek Park on Saturday, April 9, 9am to 12 noon

Announcing the 23rd annual Potomac Watershed Clean-Up on Saturday, April 9th, from 9am to 12 noon. All participants should gather at the corner of Oregon Avenue and Beech Street, NW (the Pinehurst
Tributary of Rock Creek).

Parking is available along Beech Street.  Or if it's not too far, you can walk, bike or scooter to this event.

What to Bring: The more waterproof your feet and hands are, the better. This will allow you to comfortably wade the creek collecting trash and recyclables. Rubber boots and gloves are a plus. We will be handling broken glass, metal cans and other sharp materials. If you don't want to get wet, there is plenty of trash to pick up between the road and the creek.

Tools: Long handled garden claws, cultivators, hoes, narrow rakes or even an old broomstick are great tools for reaching and dislodging debris.

Weather: It will probably be cool when the clean-up starts in the morning. Please dress appropriately. Bring some water and or snacks if you think you or your kids might need refreshment during the clean-up.

Safety: Please be careful crossing and working along Oregon Avenue and along Beech Street. Both of these roads are narrow with little or no shoulders. Please keep children in the park closer to the creek.

Recycle or Trash: We will have blue bags for recycling materials and yellow bags for trash. Recyclable items that are muddy or difficult to easily clean should be put in trash bags.

Plastic Bags: When you are finished on Saturday please write down next to your name on the sign-up sheet the estimated number of plastic bags you collected. Organizers are interested to measure the effectiveness
of the newly enacted "bag law." Please RSVP if you think you can attend.

Contact John Burwell, 202-491-6555, if you have questions or problems during the clean-up. Of course, if it's an emergency call 911.

Strong Helpers Need for Pipe Removal Project at 32nd and Beech Street

In the creek near the intersection of 32nd and Beech Streets, there are some old large sewer and storm drain pipes that need to be broken up so that they can be removed and taken to the road for disposal. This will
require strong backs, sledgehammers, safety glasses and some mighty blows to break these eyesores up. Call John Burwell, 202-491-6555, or check-in with him before proceeding in order to make a site visit before and identify exactly which pipes should be removed.

Park Area And Stream Clean-Up Safety Guidelines:
  • Dress for safety and comfort:
  • Wear sturdy work shoes and work gloves to protect your hands. We also advise long pants and long sleeve shirts to protect from briars, insect bites and poison ivy. 
  • Dress warmly in layers and bring a poncho.
  • Be sure to bring some drinking water.
  • In streams or waterways, if the water is high please stay out of the stream channel. Instead, remove debris from adjacent areas. Avoid steep stream banks. They can be fragile and collapse leading to injury to people and erosion for the stream.
  • Use the buddy system: work in pairs. Children under 14 must be supervised by a responsible adult at all times.
  • Be very careful when picking up garbage of all sizes! Large items can strain backs or throw you off balance. Small debris may have sharp edges. If you should find a syringe, leave it alone, do not pick it up, and notify park staff of its location.
  • Do not put your hands where you can't see them.  Reaching under stones or stream undercuts can be dangerous. 
  • Please check for ticks after clean-up to avoid Lyme disease.
The clean-up will be both an enjoyable day and one that allows you to take pride in your active Community
Service. Everyone benefits from those who take the time to make a difference.

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