Tonnes of junk has already been fished from the Columbia River but there’s still plenty to pick up.
Sunday is BC Rivers Day in Trail and the city is asking all locals to do their part to keep the shoreline clean.
“The Columbia River is a vital part of the area’s recreational, ecological, economical, and cultural environment,” says Event Coordinator Andrea Jolly. “Each year, the city fosters the appreciation for these aspects of all our waterways with a BC Rivers Day event.”
The day begins at Jubilee Park on the Esplanade at 10 a.m. and runs until 1 p.m.
For those interested in helping with a sweep of the shore, the city asks volunteers to arrive at 10 a.m. and check in at the Trail Ambassadors tent.
The ambassadors will assist with determining the clean up area and provide bags, gloves and instructions.
“As in past years, all areas in and around the Trail area can be cleaned up,” Jolly told the Trail Times. “Volunteers with cars are welcome to check in and then drive out to a desired location to clean up,” she added.
“Teck trucks will pick up the bags/piles of garbage and debris to bring to the landfill.”
For this event, the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary has waived the landfill fees for designated Teck trucks only.
After the cleanup, everyone is welcome back at Jubilee Park for a free BBQ lunch, cooked by United Steelworkers Local 480 and they can enter to win some prize draws.
Joining the Columbia River celebration this year is the Salmo Watershed Streamkeepers, the Natural Control Alternatives Society, and WildSafeBC.
An interactive educational exhibit will be set up by the streamkeepers, and WildSafeBC will be providing information about reducing human-wildlife conflict in our region.
“The Natural Control Alternatives Society will also be there to educate the community about their programming,” Jolly noted. “And to remind folks about the communal bear-proof bins that are available until late fall.”
Trail firefighters will also be onsite to showcase their boat and to provide messages about safety.
Last year, 100 volunteers helped the cause and brought in one tonne of garbage.
The Salmo Watershed Streamkeepers Society launched a multi-faceted awareness campaign called the The River Speaks back in 1999. The campaign is designed to increase connection with rivers and share the ecology and rich cultural heritage of the Salmo River watershed within the mighty Columbia River Basin with a wider audience.
The society encourages locals to learn more about where their water comes from, and to get involved in local stewardship to protect water sources.
Streamkeepers state, “After all, we’re all downstream.”