Base Camp Cullowhee schedules 23rd annual river cleanup

Participants in a previous Tuckaseigee River Cleanup pick up debris along the banks of the river.

Participants in a previous Tuckaseigee River Cleanup pick up debris along the banks of the river.

For more than 20 years, volunteers from Western Carolina University and the surrounding community have come together once a year to clean up one of Jackson County’s natural treasures – the Tuckaseigee River.

WCU’s Last Minute Productions and Base Camp Cullowhee are looking for volunteers to help remove a year’s accumulation of trash from a section of the Tuckaseigee River in Jackson County Saturday, April 21.

The 23rd annual river cleanup will cover a portion of the river in Jackson County beginning at East Laporte and ending at Barker’s Creek.

Volunteers will have the option of working from a raft or from the riverbank. No rafting experience is required for those working in the river; however, rafters are required to weigh 40 pounds or more.

Transportation to and from the river will be provided and participants should wear old clothing and bring gloves to protect their hands.

“The Tuckaseigee River is a wonderful resource to the residents of Western North Carolina and the river clean up provides a great opportunity for us to give back to the environment,” said Jennifer Wright, outdoor recreation coordinator for Base Camp Cullowhee and coordinator for the cleanup.

After the cleanup, a free cookout will be held for volunteers at the Western picnic area on Cullowhee Creek. Drawings will be held for a variety of prizes donated by area merchants and a $100 cash prize to the largest organized group. Each volunteer will receive a free T-shirt commemorating the event.

Pre-registration is strongly encouraged and currently being accepted. Registration forms are available on-line at this link and can be submitted via fax at (828) 227-7250 or dropped off in person on the first floor of Western’s A. K. Hinds University Center. On-site registration will be at 11 a.m. the day of the cleanup on the lawn of the University Center.

For more information, call (828) 227-3466.