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Weather Good for Oregon Coast Cleanup, but High Sand Covers Trash

 

Covering 180 miles of Oregon coast travel: Astoria, Seaside, Cannon Beach, Manzanita, Nehalem, Wheeler, Rockaway, Garibaldi, Tillamook, Oceanside, Pacific City, Lincoln City, Depoe Bay, Newport, Waldport, Yachats & Florence.

09/15/07

Secrets of the Season

Weather Good for Oregon Coast Cleanup, but High Sand Covers Trash

SOLV volunteers cleaning up in Nye Beach, Newport

(Oregon Coast) – Officials at Stop Oregon Litter and Vandalism (SOLV) report nearly 4,000 volunteers helped scour Oregon beaches under quite cooperative skies Saturday, with the weather staying not only dry, but quite sunny in some places on the Oregon coast. They were all part of the 24th annual SOLV Great Oregon Fall Beach Cleanup, cleaning up some 30 tons of trash and debris.

Volunteers commented that the beaches seemed fairly clean this fall, but the reality is that sand levels were so high that stuff was simply covered up. Guy DiTorrice, Lincoln County liaison for SOLV, said there was very little to pick up.

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“There was a lot of sand, at least on our part of the beaches,” DiTorrice said. “We’ve seen less trash on the beaches as a whole this year. But there is a lot more sand than I care to see.”

Metal object embedded in sand, Lincoln City

DiTorrice is also a beach paleontologist who runs fossil tours of the central coast under the name “Oregon Fossil Guy.” He added these high sand levels are covering up his fossil finds as well.

Sand levels may be unusually high this summer – especially on the central coast – partially because it’s been a particularly calm season with no storms.

There was no shortage of oddities found, reports SOLV, even with the higher-than-normal sand levels. Volunteers discovered a tent, a picnic table, a roll of carpet, hand blown glass paperweights, a football, a toilet, a gigantic truss, an old wooden rain gutter, two full beer bottles (among the many empties), a burned up recliner, a boat fender, industrial wire spindle and four glass floats. Volunteers also collected an abundant supply of cigarette butts, plastic, styrofoam, chairs and metal. DiTorrice and other zone captains around the Oregon coast report finding a fair amount of tires as well – the staple of beach litter.

Fish skeleton lurking in sand, Cannon Beach

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Bill Hastie of Salem was zone captain for the area around Garibaldi, Tillamook Bay and Netarts. The boat bumper was picked up off his territory. “It was really big,” Hastie said. “It was about two and a half feet to three feet across and broken in half, so the Styrofoam was showing. That was quite unusual. I’ve never seen that before in all the years I’ve been doing this. We’ve found boat bumpers, but never one this big.”

Hastie added there were quite a few pieces of metal and plastic, also de rigueur for the SOLV cleanups.

In the Neskowin/Pacific City area – in lower Tillamook County - Scott Duncan was zone captain, and he said he heard of a shark body that was found in Lincoln City. DiTorrice couldn’t confirm that, but said a dead seal pup was found on Nye Beach, in Newport.

Volunteers in Manzanita

Duncan also said there wasn’t much to pick up in his area, but they did find a makeshift barge embedded in the sand, which couldn’t be removed right away. “It was made of wood, metal, and was about 10 feet by 15 feet,” Duncan said.

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In the Nehalem Bay and Manzanita area, Shelley Parker works for the State Parks Department and was zone captain there. She also said there wasn’t much to pick up, although there were a few tires, and someone found a body of a dead deer.

SOLV said it had people from all over the world participating, including England, Japan, and Canada. Also, in the Newport area, five goats lent a leg - or four, actually.

In Rockaway Beach, zone captain Dolores Stover said the volume of stuff picked up in her area was about the same, and there was nothing unusual found.

Rockaway Beach

“We did have a great group of people that cleaned the beach,” she said. “One interesting group was from Rwanda. They had 16 teenagers that were here on a holiday. They were very well mannered, spoke English and were a pleasure to have. They have to return to Rwanda in one week and their sponsor wanted them to see what Americans do to keep their beaches as pristine as they are. I think they learned a great deal about the hospitality of Oregonians.”

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The next beach cleanup, in the spring, will yield more crazy items, said Hastie. “We’ve had the winter storms then, so lots of stuff will be on the beaches then.”

In the end, it was quite a successful event for those in the state - and for some from out of the country.

Glass float found in Newport (photo courtesy Danielle Emerick, Starfish Point)

“This event really shows how much we can accomplish when everyone gives a little bit,” said SOLV Program Director Erin Peters.

Coordinating sponsors for this year’s SOLV Great Oregon Fall Beach Cleanup are the Local Coast Haulers and the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. Major sponsors for the event are AAA Oregon/Idaho, Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, Fred Meyer, Portland General Electric, Starbucks and Wells Fargo Bank. Zone sponsors are the Curry Coastal Pilot, Hawthorn Farm Athletic Club, Hewlett-Packard, Made in Oregon, the Pelican Pub and The Inn at Cape Kiwanda, and The Mill Casino and Hotel. The beach cleanup is also supported by the Oregon Department of Land and Conservation, The Yahoo! Employee Foundation and Subaru of America. Media sponsors are KGW Northwest NewsChannel 8 and KPOJ.

Founded in 1969 by Oregon Governor Tom McCall to address litter and vandalism problems, SOLV has expanded to reach every county in the state and to bring together government agencies, businesses and individuals in programs and projects to enhance the livability of Oregon. Because of this expansion SOLV no longer calls itself “Stop Oregon Litter and Vandalism” and has adopted the acronym, SOLV, as its official name.

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For over 80 years a favorite of Seaside visitors. 51 oceanfront condos, individually owned and decorated. Suites for couples, small apartments with fireplaces and kitchenettes, one or two bed family units with fireplaces, kitchens and dining rooms. Oceanview cottages sleep anywhere from two to eight, w/ two bedrooms, some with lofts, fireplaces and kitchens. Heated outdoor pool, enormous grounds w/ picnic tables - all at quiet southern end of Seaside.

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