CLARK, NJ – Volunteers are needed to lend a hand during the Rahway River Watershed Association’s annual Rahway River Clean-Up Day, weather permitting, on Saturday, April 23. Individuals and families may join the many scout and school groups, environmentalists and fishermen who gather each year to remove trash and debris from the river banks.
The clean-up focuses on the stretch of the Rahway River between Cranford and Rahway. Volunteers will meet at the parking area near Bloodgoods Pond Dam on Parkway Drive in Winfield Park. With enough volunteers, teams can be dispatched as far upstream as the Garden State Parkway and as far downstream through Rahway River Park to the Rahway Lake area.
“This is a great way to celebrate Earth Day and if you haven’t participated in an event like this before, you will find it invigorating, and you will feel good about what you have accomplished,” longtime event organizer Joe Seebode said. “It is also a lot of fun…especially for scouts and young adults as they always find something interesting. This adds both education and adventure to the event.”
In years past, teams have recovered everything from doll heads, fire extinguishers and shopping carts to picnic tables, an entire couch and even half of a motorcycle. “We pull out some of the craziest stuff,” Seebode said.
Participants should wear jeans, long-sleeved shirts, gloves and boots. More adventurous people who have waders or hip-boots and would like to get a little wet are also welcome. Seebode suggests volunteers bring a 5-gallon bucket with a handle to carry and collect debris. Debris can then be easily transferred into large garbage bags supplied by Union County.
Event sponsors provide coffee, bagels, Danish and donuts for breakfast and grilled hot dogs, cookies, bottled water, and juice boxes for lunch. There will be coloring books, posters and other giveaways
for the participants.
Safety is a paramount concern and Seebode said that over the 16 years he has organized the event there has never been a serious injury.