Volunteers Sought for 21st Annual Christina River Cleanup on April 21

NEW CASTLE COUNTY (March 28, 2012) – DNREC Secretary Collin O’Mara encourages volunteers to join the Christina River Watershed Cleanup along the river and several of its tributaries on Saturday, April 21 from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at 12 sites throughout northern New Castle County. Due to other activities that day, two sites will begin the cleanup early – the City of Newark at 7:30 a.m. and the Naamans Creek site at 8 a.m. The Naamans Creek meeting location site is located at the east end of the F&N Shopping Center behind Sweeney’s Bakery. The Cleanup will also be included with Volunteer Delaware’s National Volunteer Week promotion.

“Helping to beautify our waterways is the perfect way to spend a few hours on a Saturday morning,” said Secretary O’Mara. “Clearing debris from the Christina watershed not only improves the landscape for residents and visitors to enjoy, it improves the health and water quality of the river and its tributaries, the primary sources of public water supply for New Castle County.”

The annual cleanup, now in its 21st year, will be held rain or shine. Since the cleanup began in 1992, more than 350 tons of tires, appliances, household items, and plastic and styrofoam have been cleared from the Christina River, White Clay Creek and other tributaries.

DNREC has been a sponsor and an integral part of the Christina River Watershed Cleanup since its inception, providing funding and other support. Specifically, DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife provides staff, boats, and specialized equipment to move volunteers and remove trash from remote locations. The cleanup of the river within the city of Wilmington benefits DNREC’s ongoing marsh restoration work at the Russell W. Peterson Urban Wildlife Refuge.

For a list of cleanup sites with directions and to register, visit www.ChristinaRiverCleanup.org or call 302-838-1897. Volunteers are encouraged to register for one of the 12 sites before Monday, April 16, so adequate supplies can be provided to each site captain. Due to insurance requirements, volunteers under the age of 16 must have adult supervision.

Participants are encouraged to wear brightly-colored clothing, long sleeves and pants, boots or water-resistant shoes, hats and heavy-duty gloves and to use insect repellent and sunscreen. Waders or hip boots are also helpful for the City of Wilmington and Churchman’s Marsh – Christiana and Newport sites. Additional jon-boat-type work boats are still needed for Wilmington’s Riverfront and the Churchman’s Marsh – Newport area. All participants must wear a life jacket while on board any boat.

All volunteers will receive a 2012 Christina River Watershed Cleanup t-shirt designed by Michael Cronin, a high school senior who attends Caravel Academy in Bear.

More than 50 organizations and businesses sponsor the cleanup each year. Primary sponsors besides DNREC include: Christina Conservancy, Inc.; Partnership for the Delaware Estuary; Artesian Water Company; United Water Delaware; Noramco, Inc.; GE Ceramic Composite Products and Dow Chemical.

For more information on DNREC’s programs, visit our website, DNREC

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