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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Earth Day Volunteer Opportunities

-- Organizations seek volunteers to Keep Sonoma Clean --
A handful of community groups organize cleanup events on a regular basis throughout Sonoma County to keep our roadways, creeks and beaches free of trash. Many of these groups are seeking volunteers to help with special cleanup events during April or early May in honor of Earth Day. The County Web site offers a comprehensive list of volunteer opportunities for individuals interested in participating in these cleanup events, as well as information about how to discard unwanted materials properly and how to report illegal dumping.

“We are very grateful that these organizations are helping us clean up litter and garbage from places where they don’t belong,” stated Karina Chilcott, publicity coordinator for Keep Sonoma Clean. “We want to encourage volunteers to seek out these opportunities, and to make it easy for volunteers to find cleanup events all listed in one place.”

In the weeks leading up to and immediately following Earth Day, more than a half-dozen separate cleanup events will take place in locations from the Sonoma Valley to the Sonoma Coast. These events include:

April 17, 9 a.m. to noon – Sonoma Ecology Center and Sonoma Stream Stewards will remove garbage and help native plants at three locations: Nathanson Creek Preserve behind Adele Harrison Middle School; Fryer Creek behind Sassarini Elementary School; or Maxwell Farms Regional Park. For information email Julie Jehly at or visit

April 17 – Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods will present an orientation session for Marine Debris Monitoring and Beach Cleanups. For more information or to register for the orientation, contact Ruby Herrick, programs manager, at (707) 869-9177, x1, or

April 17 – The Volunteer Center of Sonoma County will organize Hands Across the County, a one-day community service event where volunteers undertake a range of projects, such as creek cleanups, weeding, painting and other tasks. Register online at For more information, contact Maureen Cecil at the Volunteer Center: (707) 573-3399, x125 or
-- more --

April 23, 1-5 p.m. – The Volunteer Center of Sonoma County will organize the Agilent Environmental Challenge, a one-day community service event that focuses on the environment, including creek cleanups, tree planting and removing invasive plants. Register online at, or contact Maureen Cecil at the Volunteer Center at (707) 573-3399, x125, or

April 24, 8 a.m. to noon – The City of Santa Rosa sponsors “Spring Clean,” a one-day event to beautify Santa Rosa through a variety of projects, including mural painting, creek cleanups, graffiti removal and others. Advance registration is encouraged by contacting Ed Buonaccorsi at the City of Santa Rosa: (707) 543-3710 or Or show up at Finley Community Park at 2060 West College Ave. at 8 a.m. to join a work group.

April 25, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Cotati Creek Critters will host a one-day creek cleanup event. Cotati Creek Critters regularly hosts creek cleanups in Cotati and Rohnert Park. The meeting place is at Cotati City well lot # 2 on Lakewood Avenue. Cotati Creek Critters encourages all volunteers to read the Creek Stewardship Day guidelines at for directions and information on what to wear and bring. E-mail Jenny Blaker at or call (707) 792-4422 for questions. (Cotati Creek Critters also will host another event on May 8 from 8 a.m. to noon.)

May 2, 9:30 a.m. – ABC Rides will organize a one-day bicycling event where volunteer cyclists travel Sonoma County roads, using GPS devices to record locations of illegal dumping sites on rural roads. The spring ride incorporates roads in the North County, including Chalk Hill and Westside Rds. The ride begins and ends at NorCal Bike Sport on College Ave. and will proceed at a moderate pace for 4 to 5 hours. Prizes will be awarded.

Additional details about these Earth Day cleanup events and links to all participating organizations can be found at Click on “Get Involved.” also offers information about cleanup opportunities for other times of the year, as well as complete information about proper disposal or recycling of unwanted goods. To report an illegal dump site, visit the Web site or call 877-565-DUMP (3867).

Keep Sonoma Clean is a cooperative effort between the Sonoma County Department of Health Services, Environmental Health Division; the Sonoma County Department of Transportation and Public Works, and the Sonoma County Sheriff, and is funded by a grant from the California Integrated Waste Management Board.
Zero Waste – You Make It Happen!

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