Whitfield County and Murray County residents are invited to participate in the 22st Annual Conasauga Watershed Clean-up event on Saturday, October 22 to help keep local waterways clean at one of seven locations.
One of the largest local volunteer events in the community the annual Conasauga River Clean-up is hosted in partnership with several local non-profits, businesses, and environmental organizations during United Way’s Make a Difference Day.
Last year 360 volunteers picked up and removed 11,463 pounds of garbage from seven locations. Gretchen Lugthart, a long time organizer of the event, stated “I think we have made some progress regarding people’s attitudes toward trash in this region, but until everyone respects our beautiful streams and rivers enough to dispose of trash properly, then we will have work to do.”
One of the six most biologically diverse freshwater river systems in the United States, the Conasauga River supports 24 endangered species and a dozen other imperiled species, including the Southern Pigtoe mussel and the Conasauga logperch, a fish found nowhere else in the world.
This year’s event takes place concurrently from 9:00 am to noon at seven different sites across both Whitfield and Murray counties. Be a part of the tradition by volunteering at one of the following locations:
1. Conasauga River at Carlton Petty Road bridge
2. Conasauga River at Highway 2 bridge
3. Conasauga River at Lower King’s Bridge and Norton Bridge
4. Holly Creek, Murray County, on the Chattahoochee National Forest
5. Mill Creek tributary in the City of Dalton
6. Coahulla Creek at Prater’s Mill
7. Lakeshore Park in the City of Dalton
Participants are encouraged to arrive early for on-site registration. Volunteers can expect to spend a couple of hours in the morning picking up trash and, depending on the location, removing invasive plants like Chinese privet. Volunteers should wear sturdy shoes or boots, long pants, and long sleeve shirts. Gloves, and trash bags will be provided at each site. T-shirts with this year’s river cleanup logo will be available on a first come first serve basis.
To learn more about the river cleanup call Keep Dalton-Whitfield Beautiful at 706-278-5001 or visit www.KeepDaltonWhitfieldBeautiful.org to download the event flyer with directions to each site. Join and share the event on Facebook page at www.facebook.com/KeepDaltonWhitfieldBeautiful.
Event organizers this year include: Conasauga River Alliance, Dalton State College, Dalton Utilities, Dalton-Whitfield Solid Waste Authority, Keep Chatsworth-Murray Beautiful, Keep Dalton-Whitfield Beautiful, Limestone Valley RC & D, The Nature Conservancy, and Whitfield & Murray County Extension.
Sponsors include: Shaw Industries, J+J Flooring Group, Dalton Utilities, The Nature Conservancy, Dalton-Whitfield Solid Waste Authority, and Whitfield County Public Works.