PUBLISHED: 4:36 PM on Wednesday, May 2, 2007
Gearing up for Litter Free
Believe it or not, it's already that time of year again to lend a helping hand in keeping Juneau clean. Litter Free holds its spring Clean-Up Day on Saturday, May 5. Since 1985, Litter Free, a non-profit organization, has been encouraging garbage pick-up and recycling.

"We had around 700-800 people involved in last year's Spring Clean up. This included Litter Free, Juneau Watershed Partnership volunteers, volunteer trash haulers and local citizens who were out all over Juneau and Douglas collecting litter off our roads, beaches, streams and rivers," said Beverly Anderson, of Juneau Watershed Partnership.

We estimated that more than 34,000 pounds of garbage and recyclables were collected in 2006, but we hope to collect even more this year, she said.

For an extra incentive, free Mt. Roberts Tramway season passes will be given out to the first people that show up at bag sites, while supplies last, according to Laurie Sica, president of Litter Free.

Bag sites will be open 9 a.m.-noon in the following locations: Douglas Fire Hall, A & P Foodland Shopping Center, Western Auto, Nugget Mall, Super Bear, Duck Creek Market and Auke Bay Elementary School.

After participants collect full bags of trash, the bags are placed in obvious locations from a main roadway for by pick up by 2 p.m.

"This event brings people together from all walks of life in Juneau, and it is a chance for adults and kids to get their hands dirty for a great cause - our town. When you drop off your bags of garbage along the side of the road, you know that you really accomplished something for your community," Anderson said.

"The fact that our volunteer haulers dispose of the garbage and recycling, makes this event so much easier for volunteers to participate. You do not need to drive, or have a car, to be involved," she said.

"Right now it (Juneau) looks pretty bad. It's going to be timely by the time we get out there-we hope for good weather," said Sica.

At noon, Juneau Watershed Partnership will hold a free community barbecue at Duck Creek Market to thank all of the participants. Several local organizations also donated door prizes and food for the event.

"The spring clean-up is a great opportunity for people all over Juneau to work together as a critical mass to clean up all the garbage that accumulated this fall and winter throughout the town. It really makes a difference to the health and beauty of our natural areas," Anderson said.

"From visiting family members, tourists to State Legislators, we want them to remember the capital city of Alaska as being a lovely place to visit, both for its natural beauty as well as its clean streets, beaches and public areas. We wish that when they leave, they would like to visit again someday," according to a Litter Free statement.