2016 River Friends events:
Volunteers are needed to help with the first Chemung River cleanup of the season at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, April 8, at the Dunn Field Boat Launch in Elmira.
That’s when the Riverside Patriots group and Chemung River Friends will begin their annual trash and litter cleanups along the Chemung River. The Riverside Patriots is a group of friends and coworkers who joined forces three years ago to adopt and clean boat launches. The group, a partner with Chemung River Friends, hopes to expand this year and is looking for more volunteers.
After cleaning the Dunn Field Boat Launch the cleanup group will drive to the Fitch’s Bridge and Minier’s/Sen. Smith boat launches in Big Flats to clean those sites. Volunteers are asked to provide their own transportation. Car pooling is encouraged.
“Helping with the first cleanup of the year is a good way to meet the regulars and see what the cleanups are all about,” said River Friends Executive Director Jim Pfiffer. “You have fun, with good people and you improve the environment. Not bad, for a few hours of fresh air adventure.”
The Riverside Patriots do seven cleanups, each one on the second Saturday of each month, at 9:30 a.m. until noon, from April through October, weather permitting,” said Brian Layton, of Columbia Cross Roads, Pa., one of the group’s founders.
“We like to see kids involved, but we ask that they be accompanied by an adult,” Layton said.
If the Riverside Patriots gains volunteers, it plans to expand its cleanups to the Grove Street and Hudson Street boat launches in Elmira.
“We are happy to see more and more people using and enjoying the river, but that means more trash to be picked up,” Pfiffer said. “It is a constant problem and we are able to keep cleaning the river, thanks to volunteers like the Riverside Patriots.”
Most of the litter and trash will be picked up by hand and carried in trash bag. Gloves, trash bags and water are provided by the Riverside Patriots.
For more information e-mail Brian Layton, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the group’s Facebook page (type in full name Riverside Patriots). If the cleanup is canceled due to bad weather, it will be posted on the Riverside Patriots’ Facebook page.