Volunteer crews eliminate blight for Earth Day

Posted: 04/23/16, 7:41 PM PDT

Mother Earth sighed with relief Saturday as volunteers donated time picking up trash in Vallejo and surrounding areas.

Local efforts focused primarily at Blue Rock Springs Creek, South Vallejo and nearby state parks.

Hogan Middle School also held a cleanup operation, as did a team of volunteers at the Napa River Bay Trail in American Canyon.

Mayor hopeful Landis Graden was joined with a team of people who took part in the cleanup efforts in the southern part of Vallejo Saturday.

“The cleanup was inspiring,” Graden said. “It was very nice. We had a great turnout of all age groups and races. People from all parts of town came to help. Everyone was very enthusiastic.

“Vallejo has had some hard times over the years, but we are bouncing back strong. The community really responds well and enjoys being engaged in positive things. People here have so much energy and work with pride.”

At Blue Rock Creek Spring, a group of students from Touro University met up with local citizens to help pick up trash and clean up the outflow of a large storm drain.

Together they moved 220 pounds of trash and 40 pounds of recyclables, according to information from Recology Vallejo.

“Setting aside certain days of the year to recognize and support our environment is vital on several levels, globally and locally,” explained Doug Darling of the Vallejo Watershed Alliance. “It is important we provide a reason, a reminder for people to stop and recognize our planet, our city and local watershed. Earth Day is one of those days that we provide recognition.”

The county-wide cleanup effort stretched across seven cities and was coordinated by the Solano Resource Conservation District.

“Environmental Stewardship does not come naturally to everyone, so providing events like this creates basic and convenient opportunities for many of us to get involved,” Darling said.

Also in Vallejo, members of the Vallejo Geocachers group held their own independent Earth Day celebration by cleaning the bike trail beside Interstate 80 East, between Hiddenbrooke Community and Vallejo.

Their efforts were part of an event called Cachein-Trashout.

“This is our fourth year celebrating Earth Day (with a cleanup),” said member Trudy Anderson. “We had over 55 people at the site today cleaning up the trail. The earth is our playground and this is our way to give back.”

Matthew Adkins can be reached at 707-553-6833.