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Big cleanup planned for Patchogue River on Sunday, Oct. 16

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Marc and Kaetlyn Jackson are quite familiar with the type of garbage that’s found floating in Patchogue River and along its shorelines.

After all, the couple owns a 16-foot Dory they dock in the river.

“It’s a glorified rowboat,” Kaetlyn Jackson says.

So they cruise pretty close to the waterline.

“Every time we’re in our boat we end up scooping stuff out,” she said. “And we’re in a corner slip, so everything kind of gets pushed in. It’s a lot of water bottles, plastic bags, beer cans.

The two, who also live Patchogue, were out on the Dory in July when Marc asked his wife if there were any regular Patchogue River cleanup days.

He deferred to her because she works on river, with the National Park Service as a park planner for Fire Island National Seashore.

Finding there were no official cleanups, Kaetlyn and a few friends decided to put a cleanup together on their own.

The Patchogue River Clean-Up is now planned for Oct. 16, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Greaterpatchogue.com is a media sponsor.

The local event will coincide with the 23rd Annual National Public Lands Day, and volunteers of all ages are invited to help clean up the river at participating riverfront sites.

People are invited to help clear trash by land and boat.

All volunteers should check in at 10 a.m. at the Patchogue-Watch Hill Ferry Terminal at 150 West Avenue, where work gloves, trash pickers, safety equipment and light refreshments will be provided.

Park rangers and other partners will be offering free, family-oriented activities all day.

The Greater Patchogue Chamber of Commerce is also involved.

The chamber is helping coordinate with riverfront businesses, so that volunteers can enter their properties. Businesses are donating materials as well.

“We’re communicating with the businesses along the riverfront and getting them involved in this great effort,” said David Kennedy, the chamber’s executive director.

“Patchogue River is a very important aspect of this community,” he continued. “We have many important business along the riverfront, and it’s key to let people know that this business community is concerned about the health of our environment, as well as commerce.”

National Public Lands Day is coordinated each year by the National Environmental Education Foundation, and brings together volunteers from across the U.S. to clean up and improve land people enjoy, according to the Environmental Education Foundation website.

Last year more than 200,000 people participated in Public Lands Day events at more than 2,500 sites in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Washington D.C.

The river cleanup organizers are also seeking donations in the form of:

• Work gloves

• Crates/garbage bins

• Garbage grabbers

• Eye protection

• Bottled water

• Nets

• Sharps containers

• Safety vests

For more information call Kaetlyn Jackson at 631-687-4770 or David Kennedy at 631-207-1000


This event is being offered in collaboration with the Village of Patchogue, Greater Patchogue Chamber of Commerce, St. Joseph’s College, Cornell University Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County, Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, Blue Point Brewing Company, GreaterPatchogue.com, and the Friends of Fire Island National Seashore. Flyer below.

river-host-invite-patchogue-river-cleanup-october-16

About the author: Michael White

Michael White is a Bellport resident, longtime newspaper reporter and editor, and the owner of greaterpatchogue.com. Email him your story ideas or tips: mike@greaterpatchogue.com