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Sporting bright yellow “Love Our Planet” t-shirts, some 40 participants, including Northumberland school kids, boat captains, Smith Point Sea Rescue crew, and on-shore volunteers, hauled in hundreds of pounds of trash from creeks along the Little Wicomico River on Sunday, October 1. The event was the 2017 NAPS (Northumberland Assn. for Progressive Stewardship) Creek Clean-up.
Cockrell’s Marine Railway was the base of operations. Lynton Land coordinated the captains, including Monty Deihl, Andy Cockrell, Myles Cockrell, Bill Anderson, Wayne Corey, Bob Yinger, and Adam Wood.
After lunch sponsored by Omega Protein, boats set out with crews of students and adults, including many fifth grade TAG (Talented and Gifted) students and Beta Club members. Each boat had creeks assigned from special charts provided by NAPS. Two of the boats made second passes at the debris dumped in the creeks. As a safety precaution, a 4-man volunteer crew from Smith Point Sea Rescue stood by on its 42-foot Provincial Rescue I.
As the boats off-loaded the trash, the on-shore volunteers sorted the recycle items such as bottles and cans. The heavy items, rusty crab traps, plastic furniture, old tires, and most of a TV receiver, went directly into a large dumpster. By 3 p.m. all of the workers were now sporting mud-splattered t-shirts and shorts. A few students found items they saved from disposal.
Student volunteers who participated include Namiyah Andrews, Chloe Brann, Olivia Byrd, Victoria Douglas, Izaak Hagy, Reagan Harding, Cooper Haynie, Anna Jett, Kelsey Moss, Olivia Newsome, Kimberly Palka, Anna Pridgen, Ashley Roberts, Joey Rockson, Hallie Shackleford, and Ava Wilson.
“NAPS holds these clean-ups to help save the Bay and to call attention to the harm trash can cause to the ecology of our beautiful creeks,” said NAPS President Mike Ahart. “Also, I think the students learned something while having a great time…and the weather was perfect.”
NAPS Board member Shauna McCranie, who teaches the TAG students noted, “These children are very motivated and beach cleanup is this year’s goal. You could see the satisfaction they felt.”