#039;River Sweep#039; ready to roll on Saturday

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Dust off your dustpans, gather up your trash bags, the time has come again to help keep the Ohio River spin 'n' span.

On Saturday, volunteers will line the shorelines of the Ohio, Allegheny, Monongahela, Beaver, Kanawha and Kentucky rivers to pick up trash as part of River Sweep 2005.

The event extends across more than 3,000 miles of shoreline that will be cleaned. The effort involves six states, and is the largest environmental event of its kind.

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"River Sweep is very important because for a few hours on one day volunteers can help make a difference in the appearance of this great natural resource," said Jeanne Ison, Project Director, in a written statement. "The Sweep has grown so much in the past few years, we've been able to expand the project to tributaries and feeder streams of the Ohio River."

Stephanie Nida, community outreach coordinator with the Lawrence-Scioto County Solid Waste Management District, said such clean-ups are particularly beneficial in the Lawrence County area, which has such a wealth of outdoor recreation.

"The increase in recreation produces more litter, which makes it more necessary for us to have the clean-up," Nida said. "We probably should have it more often than once a year, but that's all that they really set aside for it."

Nida said that organizers also hope that by taking part in the clean-up, locals will be more aware of the river and utilize and care for it even more.

"Their hope is to increase public exposure to the river," Nida said. "They also want to foster greater environmental concerns for the river's future."

The clean-up in Lawrence County will take place in three different locales, the Symmes Creek boat ramp (near Peparoni's,) the Ironton boat ramp (near Family Dollar) and the South Point boat ramp (near Ashley Furniture Store off of County Road 1.)

Those who participate in the sweep from 9 a.m. to noon will receive a complimentary T-shirt and refreshments provided by local businesses.

High school or college students who have any community service requirements may be able to use the Sweep to fulfill those needs.

Persons interested in participating in the event may contact Nida at (740) 532-1231 to volunteer or for more details, or simply show up at the clean-up locations Saturday at 9 a.m.