2011 Great Mississippi River Clean-Up Comes Home to the Quad-Cities Print
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Written by Natalie Linville-Mass   
Friday, 05 August 2011 12:07

Quad-Cities/ July 10th, 2011 – A massive volunteer effort to clean the mighty   Mississippi   is about to begin its third phase in the place where it all began.  The Great Mississippi River Clean-Up (GMRC) is a volunteer effort coordinated by Living Lands & Waters (LLW), an East Moline, IL-based non-profit environmental group.  Last year, LLW coordinated the first-ever simultaneous clean up of the  Mississippi River .   This year, the initiative has expanded from 22 to 30 cities and has grown into a summer-long campaign.    Living   Lands   & Waters (LL&W) will launch the third phase of the 2011 Great Mississippi River Clean Up on Saturday, August 13th. Volunteers from the Quad-Cities through Keokuk will help pull garbage out of the waters and onto the shores of Muscatine  Burlington  Ft.   Madison  and  Keokuk  Iowa  and Oquawka, New Boston and   Nauvoo  Illinois  .  This year’s Great Mississippi River Clean-Up began on June 11th along the shores of  Wisconsin  Minnesota  and  Northern Iowa , where volunteers pulled truckloads of discarded materials from the waters so that it could be disposed of properly.   Clean-ups previously scheduled in   Saint Paul   and Red Wing, MN and Prairie duChien, WI had to be re-scheduled because high water and fast-moving debris made it too hazardous for volunteers.

The phenomenal growth of the Great Mississippi River Clean-up, with the addition of eight more cities this year, required organizers to broaden their efforts to monthly clean-ups across the summer.  In all, 1200-1500 volunteers are expected to take part in this year’s clean-up of this iconic waterway.  The final phases of the GMRC will begin September 17th and involve volunteers from  Canton  MO  through   St. Louis  MO.   Please note the dates are subject to river flood conditions

LL&W Founder and President Chad Pregracke says flooding is something LLW adapts to almost every year.  “The river is constantly changing, and because of that, we must always be prepared and able to respond.”  Pregracke, who was recently recognized as a ‘Service Hero’ at the Points of Light Foundation’s tribute to former President George H.W. Bush, Sr.  Pregracke adds that doing the clean up in phases will help bring our important message to more people.  Said Pregracke, “That’s part of what Living Lands and Waters is all about:  bringing the health of our rivers to the attention of everyone who depends upon them, and then working to improve it.”

The Great Mississippi River Cleanup will remove debris such as tires, barrels, propane tanks, appliances, plastic bottles and more from the waterway. Volunteers will be needed to assist in debris collection on the day of the cleanup. If possible, LL&W is also looking for people who are willing to haul debris in their boats to the boat launch where roll-off dumpsters or other disposal facilities will be in place.

 Living   Lands  and Waters is a 501(c) (3) environmental organization established in 1998 and headquartered in   East Moline  Illinois  .  LL&W has removed more than six million pounds of trash through cleanup efforts along the  Mississippi  Missouri  Ohio  Illinois  and  Potomac  rivers since its launch over 12 years ago. LL&W also coordinated flood relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina and the historic floods in  Cedar Rapids  Iowa  and   Lake Delton  Wisconsin   in 2008. 

For more information or to sign up as a volunteer, please visit www.livinglandsandwaters.org.


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