Monday, September 9, 2013

A Trashy Weekend

Some people posted on a local newstation Facebook page that they were ashamed at the litter around town for the  Hotter 'n Hell Hundred. Of course, most of their ire was directed at the City of Wichita Falls which had been putting out a yeoman's effort to ensure the city looked nice for the 15,000 riders. I wasn't very nice and offered to direct the complainers to a number of groups that pick up litter around town on a regular basis. Not surprisingly, no one contacted me.

Trash at Sikes Lake
June got a little muddy
 One such cleanup was the annual Sikes Lake cleanup that is the Saturday following Labor Day each year. The Rolling Plains Texas Master Naturalist chapter joins up with Midwestern State University to do a lake cleanup. We have had as many as 200 volunteers show up. This year, there were probably about 25 - 30 people, which was enough.  Although the amount of trash in the truck may not seem like a lot, that's a big truck.

One of the hardest working volunteers was June, who ended up muddy, but keep up good humor throughout the project.

Trash near Lake Wichita
More trash in same area
There are still a lot of places that need a good cleanup. The next day I was birding out around Lake Wichita and came across this trashy area. I took the picture with my cell phone, so it isn't the best, but if you click on the photos you will get a better idea.

If everyone did their best to reduce the amount of trash they produce and to dispose of the trash they do responsibly, then we wouldn't have to be embarrasssed when we have company. We can all pick up around our houses and businesses. I have to do a litter patrol around our house at least once a week to pick up the trash people through out of their cars.

In addition to the annual Sikes Lake cleanup, the Rolling Plains Texas Master Naturalist chapter cleans up Plum Lake quarterly. The Friends of Lake Arrowhead State Park host at least one park cleanup a year and there are several groups that do Adopt-a-Highway areas. The one I participate in is along Sisk Road with the Red River Sierra Club group. Annually the Keep Wichita Falls Beautiful hosts a city-wide cleanup in April.

There are lots of places that need a cleanup. Take a trash bag with you when you walk, get involved in one of the groups that does a cleanup, or organize a group yourself.

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