NEW CASTLE COUNTY – DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin encourages volunteers to sign up for the Department-sponsored 28th annual Christina River Watershed Cleanup along the river and several tributaries from 9 a.m.-noon, Saturday, April 6, at 13 sites throughout northern New Castle County.
“Clearing debris from the Christina River Watershed not only improves the landscape for residents and visitors to enjoy, it improves the health and quality of the river and its tributaries, the primary sources of public water supply for New Castle County residents and businesses. The work these volunteers do is important, and we thank them for it,” said Secretary Garvin.
The annual cleanup will be held rain or shine. Also, for the third year, the City of Newark will hold its Spring Community Clean Up in conjunction with the Christina River Watershed Cleanup. Due to the opening day of upstate trout season, White Clay Creek State Park will hold its cleanup on Saturday, April 13.
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, Naamans Creek and other tributaries. More than 14,000 volunteers have filled trash bags along Churchmans Marsh, White Clay Creek State Park, the City of Wilmington, and various other locations.
More than 50 organizations and businesses sponsor the cleanup each year. In addition to DNREC, primary sponsors include: Christina Conservancy, Partnership for the Delaware Estuary, Noramco, Artesian Water Company, New Castle County, and SUEZ Water in Delaware.
DNREC has been a sponsor and an integral part of the Christina River Watershed Cleanup since its inception. Specifically, DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife provides planning support, in addition to staff and boats to transport volunteers and to offload trash collected from remote locations. The river cleanup within the City of Wilmington benefits DNREC’s ongoing marsh restoration work at the Russell W. Peterson Urban Wildlife Refuge. Three of DNREC’s Delaware state parks – Brandywine Creek, Fox Point, and White Clay Creek – and several New Castle County parks, also serve as primary cleanup locations.
For a complete list of cleanup sites and to register for volunteering, please visit www.ChristinaRiverCleanup.org or call 302-307-2757. Volunteers are encouraged to sign up for one of the 13 sites as soon as possible so adequate supplies can be provided to each site captain. For safety and efficiency, volunteers are encouraged to wear long sleeves and pants, boots or water-resistant shoes, hats, heavy-duty gloves, sunscreen, and insect repellant. Waders or hip boots are helpful for the City of Wilmington, Newport Boat Ramp, and Churchman’s Marsh-Christiana sites. Due to insurance requirements, volunteers under the age of 16 must have adult supervision. All participants must wear a life jacket while on board any boat.
As a thank you for their efforts, volunteers will receive their choice of a reusable tote bag or a t-shirt with the Christina River Watershed Cleanup’s simple heron logo. Water and a variety of refreshments will be provided at all locations.
For more information on DNREC’s programs, visit www.dnrec.delaware.gov.