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...And still more junk pulled from Allegheny

2010 river cleanup wraps up

September 20, 2010
Enthusiasm. If asked to describe Saturday’s culminating River Clean-Up in one word, the word would be enthusiasm. Smiling faces and cooperative teamwork filled Buckaloons Recreation Center near Irvine Saturday, bringing days of hard work nearly to completion for the second annual event, and even more trash was collected than in 2009. “We think there’s more trash than last year,” said volunteer John Beard, who, with Josh and Piper Lindell, coordinated this year’s event. “Our cup runneth over,” he said, indicating the piles of glass and plastic bottles, refuse and metal surrounding him at Buckaloons, and describing the dumpster at Crescent Park that was overflowing with scrap metal. Beard said more garbage didn’t mean more littering on the Allegheny River in the past year. It meant more volunteers. More than 500 people helped out at this year’s clean-up, more than twice the number of people who volunteered last year. And the garbage was mostly old garbage. “Most of this fortunately isn’t new trash,” Beard added, no computers or electronics, but mostly old glass and plastic. “And that’s a good thing.” Among the flotsam were an old Harley Davidson motorcycle and two five-gallon tanks with toilet seats attached. Two plush toys hauled from the drink will be cleaned and initiated as river clean-up mascots, Beard said. Volunteers came from all over Warren County and beyond. A group from the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford helped out, and Northwest Savings Bank loaned out its employees this week to see the clean-up succeed. Mike Chapel, who was camping nearby at Buckaloons, pitched in for two days even though he makes his home at Albuquerque, N.M. Chapel, whose family is from Youngsville, was in town for a reunion and saw the efforts on the river Tuesday. He was happy to pitch in. “We need to be good stewards of our environment” Chapel explained. When you have something as beautiful as the Allegheny River and “your are not taking care of it, that’s just wrong.” Volunteer Dick Klancher was at Buckaloons unloading river garbage, sorting and directing volunteers. “I believe strongly in what Piper and Josh are trying to do,” Klancher said. “This is what community is all about. It’s a chance to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.” “We have a fantastic area with all its resources,” Klancher added, “and it’s because of young people like Josh and Piper that things are starting to happen.”

Article Photos

Times Observer photo by Eric Paddock
After scores of tires were pulled from the Allegheny during the week, still more were recovered on Saturday.



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