Join the Siletz Watershed Council, MidCoast Watersheds Council and their partners for a day on the water removing trash during the annual Siletz River Cleanup on Saturday, April 13. The cleanup is from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., and volunteers will gather at Hee Hee Illahee Park in Siletz.
This is a family-friendly event, with opportunities for trash pickup both by boat and by foot to support the health of this river system.
With a river length of 67 miles from its headwaters in the Coast Range to where it meets the Pacific just south of Lincoln City, the Siletz River Watershed drains a total area of 197,120 acres. The cities of Siletz, Toledo, Newport and Seal Rock all obtain water from this system. In addition, the river supports vulnerable populations of coho salmon, summer steelhead and spring chinook, as well as winter steelhead, fall chinook, chum, and cutthroat and rainbow trout, and is a popular recreational fishing destination.
River users from the central coast and the Willamette Valley recognize the importance of this watershed. During the 2017 cleanup, 20 volunteers in four boats collected more than 1,000 pounds of garbage from the river and its banks. In 2018, more than 25 volunteers in five boats collected in excess 1,200 pounds of garbage.
These collections include a range of trash, from smaller items such as plastic bottles and food containers, to larger items like car tires and even car bodies. By working with local boat owners, more trash can be removed than would be possible with just land-based coverage.
Prior to dividing volunteers into teams, coffee and doughnuts will be available at the park, thanks to donations by Starbucks and JC Thriftway. After all the hard work is done, a barbecue lunch and raffle will take place, with a variety of prizes donated by local businesses and organizations.
People willing to help out should bring gloves and waterproof boots and dress in layers. Registration is not required but is preferred — go online at https://www.solveoregon.org/opportunity/a0C1I00000Gu7wd