Volunteers needed Sept. 13 to help clean trash from Eel River

Want a beautiful river with fish and other wildlife? How about a safe place to boat, watch birds and catch some of those fish? First you have to get rid of the rusty metal, broken glass, bicycles, air conditioners, chairs, and mud-logged tires.

Volunteers are needed for the annual Middle Eel River Clean-Up, which works to clear the waterway in the North Manchester area each fall. It begins at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 13.

Because there are usually a lot of glass and rusted items in the river, all crew members must be adults, said Terri Michaelis, coordinator for the Middle Eel River Watershed Initiative.

The Initiative will provide gloves, trash bags, and drinking water. Volunteers will need to bring enclosed water shoes, tennis shoes, or boots – absolutely no sandals. Crews will be trudging through water that is waist-high or higher and will need to be on the lookout for poison ivy, which hugs the shoreline. Bring bug spray.

Volunteers will be working in the river, filling canoes with trash as they walk downstream. This is not the place for favorite clothes, cells, or jewelry.

Volunteers will gather at the North Manchester Street Department, 407 Wabash Road. They’ll begin with some quick lessons in safety and river quality.

Afterward, workers will find a light lunch waiting, donated and served by Rotary North Manchester.

Advance registration is required and participants must sign a release form. To register or get more information, contact Terri Michaelis at 260-982-5101 or tmmichaelis@manchester.edu.

Initially funded by a $1 million Clean Water Act Grant, the Initiative is a Manchester University-led coalition of agencies and individuals who are determined to improve water quality, enhance recreation and promote conservation of natural resources in the middle Eel River watershed.

This project has been funded wholly or in part by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under assistance agreement C9975482-08 to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.  The contents of this document do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Environmental Protection Agency, nor does mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.

August 29, 2014

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