Tales weren’t of the “one that got away” or the exaggerated size of a hooked walleye, but, more than 4,000 pounds, or two tons, of trash and debris was collected during the annual Missouri River/Lake Sharpe Clean up Wednesday, July 10. The event, the fourth in the last five years, had more than 40 volunteers working along the river in Pierre-Fort Pierre, S.D.
The volunteers worked out of boats or as ground based crews. Trash and debris collected was hauled back to Down’s Marina in Pierre, S.D., where it was properly disposed of by the City of Pierre.
This year’s clean up netted 1,560 pounds of lumber and other rubble, 1,380 pounds of trash and litter, 540 pounds of scrap metal - including a refrigerator, a large plastic culvert weighing approximately 400 pounds and 180 pounds of tires.
The clean-up is a partnership between the Central South Dakota Chapter of Walleyes Unlimited, the Izaak Walton League of America, the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Department, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the City of Pierre, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Forest Service and many businesses and organizations.
The Missouri River and Lake Sharpe are very important components to the quality of life in this region. The annual Missouri River clean up event gives people who spend time on the river the opportunity to give something back to this precious resource.
In what has become a tradition following the clean-up, volunteers were treated to a walleye fish fry by the members of Central South Dakota Chapter of Walleyes Unlimited and the Pierre Chapter of the Izaak Walton League in Griffin Park near Down’s Marina.
Organizers of the clean up appreciate all of the contributions and donations from area businesses, agencies and organizations that led to the success of this year’s event.
Plans are underway for next year’s Missouri River/Lake Sharpe Clean up. Those interested in volunteering, providing a boat, or donating items for the 2014 Missouri River/Lake Sharpe Clean up can contact Paul Lepisto of the Izaak Walton League of America at 605-224-1770, 605-220-1219 or email firstname.lastname@example.org; Bret Afdahl with South Dakota Walleyes Unlimited at 605-222-2972 or email email@example.com.