Beach cleanup: A new Peninsula holiday tradition

More than9,000 pounds of spent fireworks beach litter was removed from our Peninsula beaches last year in the Grass Roots Garbage Gang's After the Fourth Beach Cleanup.

PENINSULA - For generations, family and friends have gathered to celebrate the Fourth of July in one of the many quaint seaside villages which dot the shoreline on the Peninsula. Neighborhoods and towns swell as family and friends gather at homes, beach cottages, cozy motels, darling inns, lush B & B's, spacious RV parks and campgrounds.

In recent years a new tradition has emerged. Visitors, weekenders, local community groups and residents have joined together to do a clean sweep of the beach the morning following the last evening of the Fourth of July celebrations. This year it is Monday, July 5, at 9:30 a.m.

Last 4th of July weekend over 300 participants collected more than 9,000 pounds of firework and celebration debris. Families, friends, neighborhoods, civic and social organizations teamed up with some of the thousands of visitors who enjoyed the weekend's festivities.

Common remarks were shared, "Our family enjoyed the fireworks and celebration on the beach, and we felt a responsibility to leave the beach clean."

This year's celebration starts at the Port of Ilwaco with fireworks over the picturesque port at dusk Saturday evening July 3. Ocean Park hosts a festival in the park and a Grande Parade Sunday at 2 p.m., an event no family should miss. Sunday evening, July 4, the city of Long Beach and its merchants host a spectacular fireworks showcase at dusk at the Bolstad approach. Families enjoy the show from the mile-long boardwalk or by snuggling up in the dunes.

The next morning, July 5, everyone is encouraged to arrive at any of the six major beach approaches at 9:30 a.m. to help clean. Coordinators will be waiting for your help at Seaview, Bolstad, Cranberry, Klipsan, Ocean Park and Oysterville approach in Surfside. They'll supply garbage bags and directions to the area that most needs attention.

For the area's 4th of July Celebration information: Contact the Long Beach Peninsula Visitors Bureau at 1-800-451-2542 or 360-642-2400. Visit their Web site (www.funbeach.com). For more information on the beach cleanup (or to adopt a section of beach) contact Shelly Pollock at 360-665-5388, (shelly@ourbeach.org )

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