Clean river important for wildlife, community 

Published 12:57 pm Tuesday, June 13, 2017

The first day of summer isn’t until June 20, so it only makes sense to do a little more spring cleaning over the weekend.

That will be the case for many counties along the Kentucky River, including Clark, when the Kentucky River Sweep begins at 9 a.m. Saturday at the beach at Fort Boonesborough State Park.

The 2017 River Sweep, sponsored by the Kentucky River Authority and the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission, is an event for individuals and families to help clean up trash along the banks of the Kentucky River.

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The cleanup project for the Ohio River and its tributaries including the Kentucky River brings thousands of volunteers to various riverbanks to collect tons of trash and debris.

Clark County EMA/CSEPP Director Gary Epperson is looking for volunteers for the annual spring cleaning project.

Saturday, volunteers from Clark and Madison counties will meet to collect litter from the shore of the river near Fort Boonesborough State Park.

The volunteers will pick up trash along the Madison County side from the dam to the boat ramp in addition to clearing the Clark County side nearly to the bridge.

In past years, multiple dump trucks have been filled with litter collected from the banks of the river by an average of 100 volunteers.

Epperson hopes to see even more garbage collected this year.

Besides the aesthetic aspect, keeping the river clean is important for the wildlife and communities living nearby.

Keeping litter out of the water and off the banks of the river can prevent animals from ingesting or getting stuck in the garbage, which can be fatal.

Additionally, Clark and Madison counties draw their drinking water from the section of the river being cleaned Saturday.

The river is essentially the life blood of the community.

While our drinking water is filtered and tested, it is important to preserve and protect this waterway for our safety and health.

The community is encouraged to take part in the clean up effort.