Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Great American Cleanup collects tons of litter in Hillsborough

J.C. Singletary, 5, and his sister, Erica, 8, picked up plastic bags, beer bottles, cardboard and other items along the westbound lanes of the Courtney Campbell Parkway in Tampa during the Great American Cleanup on Saturday.

KAINAZ AMARIA | Times

J.C. Singletary, 5, and his sister, Erica, 8, picked up plastic bags, beer bottles, cardboard and other items along the westbound lanes of the Courtney Campbell Parkway in Tampa during the Great American Cleanup on Saturday.

TAMPA — After two hours plodding through dense mangroves to pick up trash in the Great American Cleanup, Andrew James said he'll think twice about littering.

Just Friday, Andrew, 17, rolled down the window of his parents' car and threw out a Mountain Dew bottle. Nobody was around, and he didn't want to trash their car.

Then on Saturday, instead of sleeping in, he joined his Jefferson High School ROTC classmates at about 8 a.m. to clean Cypress Point Park with about 130 other volunteers.

"It was hard work, but it was worth it," he said.

About 3,000 people across Hillsborough County picked up thousands of pounds of trash Saturday. The exact tonnage wasn't immediately available, but Keep Hillsborough County Beautiful executive director Christine Commerce guess they gathered about 60,000 pounds.

The weirdest item found may have been a dog's leg. Yes, just the leg, said Commerce, who led the Courtney Campbell Causeway site, where the furry leg was found.

At Cypress Point Park, Andrew and his friends ducked under branches and climbed down steep dunes to get through the mangroves. They found a barnacle-covered truck tire and 10-foot pieces of lumber, along with dozens of plastic bottles, Styrofoam cups and aluminum cans.

And although they suffered scrapes and scratches, they said they were tough enough to handle the job.

"We left the easier parts for the Brownie troops," said ROTC commander Bruce Lamping.

The cleanups are held twice a year and, in just six months, tons of trash washes onto beaches, gets stuck in mangroves and is tossed out car windows. This year, volunteers went to about 40 sites across the county.

At Cypress Point Park in the West­shore area, the volunteers picked up several truckloads worth of trash. The mess was more manageable than when the city of Tampa bought the site about 15 years ago, said longtime cleanup volunteer Alan Donn.

"Back then, it was a real dump," he said. Volunteers found washing machines and dozens of tires.

This year, the cleanup coordinators provided clear bags for recyclable items. Before, all the trash was lumped together because recycling centers couldn't process the often dirty, barnacle-covered material, Commerce said. This year, CONEX Recycling volunteered to pick up the recyclables and give it a try.

Jessica Vander Velde can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 661-2443.

Great American Cleanup collects tons of litter in Hillsborough 04/18/09 [Last modified: Saturday, April 18, 2009 10:18pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Cubs down Dodgers 3-2; force NLCS Game 5 Thursday

    Ml

    CHICAGO — Javier Baez snapped an 0-for-20 skid with two home runs, former Ray Wade Davis hung on for a six-out save and the Cubs avoided a sweep, holding off the Dodgers 3-2 Wednesday night in Game 4 of the NL Championship Series.

  2. One of the best places for investing in a rental house is in Tampa Bay

    Real Estate

    Two Tampa Bay ZIP Codes are drawing national attention.

    . If you're looking to invest in a house to rent out, few places are better than  ZIP Code 34607 in Hernando County's Spring Hill area, according to ATTOM Data Solutions.
[LANCE ROTHSTEIN   |  Times
 file photo]

  3. Bucs' Vernon Hargreaves: 'I'm not making any plays'

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Eli Manning gathered his receivers together on the sideline during the Giants' Week 4 game against the Bucs and told them he planned to target the weakest link of the secondary all afternoon.

    Patriots receiver Chris Hogan gets position in front of Bucs cornerback Vernon Hargreaves for a 5-yard touchdown pass in New England’s win on Oct. 5.
  4. Suspect in Maryland office park shooting is apprehended

    Nation

    EDGEWOOD, Md. — A man with a lengthy criminal past who was fired from a job earlier this year for punching a colleague showed up for work at a countertop company on Wednesday and shot five of his co-workers has been arrested, authorities said. Three of them were killed and two critically wounded.

    Harford County, Md., Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler shows a picture of Radee Labeeb Prince, the suspect in the workplace shootings.
  5. Lightning's J.T. Brown to stop anthem protest, focus on community involvement

    Lightning Strikes

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Lightning wing J.T. Brown will no longer raise his first as a protest during the national anthem before games.

    J.T. Brown says he will work more with the Tampa police and groups that serve at-risk young people.