More than 120 volunteers helped remove 2,260 pounds of trash from six Lake Tahoe beaches on July 5, after thousands of people flocked to the region to enjoy Fourth of July festivities.
The debris represented almost 10 cubic yards, or a dump truck full, according to the League to Save Lake Tahoe, which organized the cleanup.
Trash included more than 3,000 cigarette butts, 1,200 cans, 800 glass and plastic bottles and 320 plastic bags.
“Tahoe’s beaches were choked with trash. We’re so inspired by the volunteers who came out on their holiday weekend to help,” said the league’s Community Engagement Manager, Marilee Movius. “When we celebrate July Fourth, part of what we’re celebrating is our beautiful country and our pristine Lake. The enthusiasm for the Lake was contagious the morning after the festivities. As the volunteer crews swept down the beaches, other beachgoers couldn’t resist joining in.”
While the league has hosted beach cleanups for more than five years, this was the second annual Keep Tahoe Red, White & Blue Beach Cleanup. This year’s sites included Commons Beach in Tahoe City, Nevada Beach and Zephyr Shoals on the East Shore, and Kiva, Regan and El Dorado beaches on the South Shore, representing about three miles of shoreline.
“The beaches that were cleaned represent less than 5 percent of Tahoe’s total shoreline, so we know a lot more needs to be done,” said Jesse Patterson, the league’s deputy director. “We hope to spread the message that we all have to pack out what we pack in. As we engage more of the Tahoe community in this important issue, we’re hoping that beach cleanups one day won’t be necessary.”
The 120 volunteers came from local communities to Reno, Sacramento, the Bay Area and Southern California, according to the league.
The following businesses sponsored cleanup sites: The Ridge Tahoe, Lake of the Sky Outfitters, The North Face, Grass Roots Natural Foods, SUP Tahoe and Willard’s Sport Shop.
To learn about future volunteer opportunities for the league, please visit keeptahoeblue.org/news/events/.