On the morning of Saturday, Sept. 20, Friends of Tigertail hosted the International Coastal Cleanup. Despite the overcast and “almost rainy” day, 75 volunteers participated.
Keep Collier Beautiful provided collection gear, including garbage bags for trash and recyclables, plastic gloves, logo T-shirts, water and data collection forms. Once the information recorded on the data forms is compiled, it will be forwarded to Keep Collier Beautiful and eventually to the Ocean Conservancy. All cleanup results throughout the world on this particular Saturday will be published onthe website: OceanConservancy.org. It was truly an international project.
FOT Board Members Susan LaGrotta, Joe Parisi, Linda Colombo and Gwyn Goodman helped with the event set up, handing out the collection kits and directing volunteers to areas of the park. Parisi manned the membership table, as well as photographing volunteers with their finds.
Overall, enthusiastic volunteers from a number of local organizations participated in the morning event, including FOT members, Marco Island residents, Chamber of Commerce members, Cub Scout Troop 234, Daisy Troop 766 and members of theIsle of Capri Christian Church youth group. FOT provided 40 volunteer certificates to the participating youth.
Marco Ocean Beach Resort students and employees did a massive sweep of the entire parking lot, where they tallied the trash and collected the majority of the debris. Cigarette butts were the number one item collected, followed by food wrappers and plastic bottles. The youth group from Isles of Capri Christian Church managed to walk all the boardwalks, retrieving debris thrown over the sides into the dunes. Trash was found aroundgarbage pails and adjacent to parking spots.
Volunteers amassed an amazing 150 pounds of debris, including shoes, golf clubs, bait buckets, enumerable food wrappers, bottle caps, both plastic and metal, large pieces of wood with nails, metal piping, plastic bottles, glass bottles and cans. Most unusual item was a large kitchen knife with an intact wooden handle.
A special thank you is extended to all volunteers who engaged in keeping the beach beautiful while learning about this unique environment called Tigertail Beach Park. Check out FriendsofTigerTailbeach.com for all upcoming events. Like Us on Facebook:www.facebook.com/FriendsOfTigerTailBeach.