Keep Virginia Beautiful, Richmond, VA

Keep Virginia Beautiful’s inaugural Shiver in the River, which took place on Jan. 31, was an enormous success.

This past Saturday, when it was just a smidge under 42 degrees and the James River was running a cool crisp 37.8, around 400 people showed up to Give 60 and help KVB do a cleanup. The northern bank of the James around Tredegar Iron Works hadn’t looked this good in a long time. With so many volunteers showing up, KVB split off almost 75 brothers from the University of Richmond’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon to head over to Pony Pasture for an auxiliary cleanup. These young men collected 10 pretty decent-sized bags of recyclables and 10 decent-sized bags of trash.

After the Cleanup, 150 hearty and crazy souls stripped down to Speedos, vintage suits, and costumes to wade through chest-deep water, give a shout-out to Richmond Fire & Rescue, and scramble back across and up the shore. Big hugs to the guys and gals at RF&R for being there with their boats. They didn’t save any lives, but they were lifesavers. Our James River Jumpers then shivered over to the heated tent where they enjoyed delicious BBQ and dumplings from Lunch/Supper skipper Rick Lyons.

There were a few take-aways from the Shiver in the River. First is that our job (and by that we mean all of us) is never done. Pony Pasture is one of the most popular spots along the James in Richmond, and it was obviously in need of care. Same goes for the areas around Tredegar. Second is that we need to do a better job of spreading our message. One of our main goals with the Shiver was to raise funds to do that. And we still need your help. As a nonprofit, we only exist because of your donations of time and money. Lastly, we realized that acting crazy to help keep Virginia beautiful can be a blast. We didn’t expect as many people to show up as did, and really appreciate that. So, our Second Annual Shiver in the River is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016. Just saying.

If you’d like to be a part of planning this wacky thing next year, head over to our Make a Difference page, click “Education/Other,” and tell us you want to be a part of the Shiver crew.

Those of you who played with us this year – You Rock.

Keep Guntersville Beautiful, AL

The Lakeview Community Civic Organization (LCCO) coordinated its annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service Neighborhood Cleanup. Keep Guntersville Beautiful assisted in this worthy endeavor by providing gloves, safety vests, bags, litter picker sticks and calling for volunteers. Volunteers assembled at Williamson-Harris Park for a breakfast provided by the LCCO. Afterwards, teams spent three hours picking up trash and collecting recyclables throughout the Lakeview neighborhood. The Guntersville Police Department, the LCCO and their partners in the Building Bridges Task Force will receive a Distinguished Service Citation for Community Improvement Litter Prevention & Revitalization for such service projects at the KAB National Conference Award Ceremony in Washington, D.C. on January 27, 2015.

Keep Moore County Beautiful, Carthage, NC

On December 18, 2014 seven Keep Moore County Beautiful (KMCB) board members and friends conducted a roadside cleanup of Highway 15-501, Carthage, North Carolina. KMCB participates in the Adopt-A-Highway program and is responsible for both sides of 15-501 for the one mile section of roadway between Morganton Road and the entrance to Fairwoods on 7.

The volunteers all watched a safety video provided by the NC Department of Transportation (NCDOT) prior to the event. Safety vests, trash bags and “grabbers” were provided by the KMCB administration.

Bob Coates, a KMCB board member said “It was a great event and very satisfying to have so many of our members pitch in and help get this well traveled section of road looking good again.”

14 bags of trash were collected and taken to the landfill and a report submitted to NCDOT. Cigarette butts and lottery tickets were the most prevalent form of litter encountered. Organizations who adopt a section of highway commit to doing cleanups a minimum of four times a year. KMCB will be doing this section of road again in late March 2015.

Keep Colorado Springs Beautiful, Colorado Springs, CO

Keep Colorado Springs Beautiful partnered with El Paso County and the Fountain Creek Watershed District to clean up Fountain Creek, with funding from the Lowe’s / Keep America Beautiful Community Beautification grant. The stats are in and watershed-wide over 600 participants collected nearly 7 tons of trash and debris from the Fountain Creek Watershed. Community volunteers and Keep Colorado Springs Beautiful staff and volunteers (shown in the photo) worked at the Creek Week final event to beautify El Paso County’s Fountain Creek Regional Park.

Konrad Schlarbaum, Sustainability Coordinator at Pikes Peak Community College said “It is really encouraging to work alongside other community members who were voicing their concerns over how much litter they saw in the Cottonwood Meadows area. I took every opportunity to educate them on the importance of what they were doing there and what they can do back home. My hope is that they, in turn, educate their families and other community members.” We sincerely thank Lowe’s and Keep America Beautiful for supporting this successful beautification project.

KEEP MOORE COUNTY BEAUTIFUL, CARTHAGE, NC

Thanks to all our Big Sweep volunteers. Scott Dunlap got up and picked up trash at 7:30 a.m., Saturday, October 11th, for our second Big Sweep Event in Robbins, Bear Creek. We wondered why there wasn’t as much trash as usual. Thanks, Bob Coates and Fred Shuker, Board Members from Keep Moore County Beautiful. Besides Scott we had William, Lynne, and River McDuffie, Mark Garner, Cynthia Reeves, and Dave and Lisa Hobbs, all from Foothills Outdoors. We picked up 20 bags of trash, one mattress, air conditioner casing, and 3 tires. Our three main canoe and kayak access points (Spies rd. 705 bridge, and Reynolds Mill bridge) were the focus of this years clean up. The water was too low to do much in the creek. River was able to get in her boat at Reynolds Mill, and removed a lot of trash from around the bridge. But we had a successful day Keeping Moore County Beautiful.

Keep Moore County Beautiful , Carthage, North Carolina

Keep Moore County Beautiful Executive Director, Chad C. Beane, and Assistant Karen S. Schreifels, once again participated in the North Carolina Big Sweep Waterway Cleanup for 2014. Keep Moore County Beautiful collaborated with the Aberdeen Parks & Recreation for the waterway cleanup event, Saturday, October 4th. The event was a success. The North Carolina Big Sweep is a one-day event to remove litter from our waterways. We had many volunteers to include, Bob Coates, board member, Jack Clelland, Parks Coordinator, Boys Scouts, Troop 88, and a student from Pinecrest High School. The volunteers collected a substantial amount of litter from a 2-mile stretch. We collected 20 pounds of recycle, 22 pounds of waste, 1 large drain pipe and two entangled wildlife, (1) goose, (1) duck. Keep Moore County Beautiful is very proud to participate in this program and very grateful for all the groups and volunteers that put forth a collaborative effort to continue to Keep Moore County Beautiful in North Carolina.

NC Marine Debris Symposium, Sneads Ferry, NC

Bronwen Evans, Keep America Beautiful’s director of litter programs, presented at the Second Annual NC Marine Debris Symposium in Sneads Ferry, N.C., last week.

Lisa Rider of Keep Onslow Beautiful and her team did an incredible job organizing the event which included marine debris issues, waste reduction, recycling, litter prevention, clean marinas, and green tourism. Evans’ Cigarette Litter Prevention Program session was very well-received and generated a lot of interest: how to keep cigarette butts off the beach is a hot topic!

Keep America Beautiful staff participated in a couple of cleanups at beautiful Topsail Beach (above), networked with a great group of people, and worked to make the whole event “zero waste.”

KAB of Anderson County SC

KAB of Anderson County (SC) is looking into a new outreach. There has been a noticeable increase in litter on the county’s horse riding trails. KAB will be encouraging riders to pick up litter on sections of riding trails. This effort will increase the perception that riders should “pack it out if you pack it in.”

Anderson County has the second highest number of horses in the state and is home to many recreational riders. Anderson County horse trails are a beautiful and relaxing part of our area and should be appreciated as the treasure they are! Two riders, Will Smith and Ed Sheriff, discussed their concerns with KAB members and Solid Waste Dept department staff and were picking up litter at Fants Grove on Sept. 22.