HARKERS ISLAND – Cape Lookout National Seashore has partnered with Carteret Big Sweep in an effort to clean up Shackleford Banks in recognition of National Public Lands Day Saturday, Sept. 30.
For this public beach cleanup effort, organizers are looking for volunteers who are available to assist from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday. To participate in this six-hour event, register in advance by calling Cape Lookout National Seashore Headquarters at 252-728-2250.
Cape Lookout National Seashore’s authorized passenger ferry, Island Express Ferry Service, will provide free transportation to and from Shackleford Banks for all volunteers participating in this cleanup effort.
Participants should bring a reusable water bottle, sunscreen, work gloves, water shoes or closed-toe shoes, hat, sunglasses, beach towel, extra shirt, lunch and snacks, camera and/or phone.
Established in 1994, National Public Lands Day is celebrated annually at public lands across the United States. This day of service promotes civic engagement and the care taking of public lands.
Last year, National Public Lands Day had more than 200,000 participating volunteers at at least 2,500 sites across the United States. It is estimated that this effort created more than $18 million in public land improvements.
Ocean trash harms marine life and threatens the livelihoods of people who depend on the ocean for fishing, tourism and transportation as well as the health and safety of citizens.
Cape Lookout National Seashore strives to be a trash-free park, officials said, noting that its policy not only protects the safety of people and wildlife but also encourages visitors to return to the pristine shores of the Crystal Coast.
During the last cleanup effort of Shackleford Banks, volunteers removed more than 700 pounds of trash and volunteers compiled data on the trash collected for oceanic research.