The Block Island Times

Helping Block Island, one beach at a time

By Lily O'Gara | Jun 20, 2014
Photo by: Lily O'Gara Helping to clean up the beach on June 18 were, from left, Mary Biggs, Marge Thorp and Glen Thorp.

Litter. All kinds of litter.

The Nature Conservancy’s Seasonal Assistant Mary Biggs and volunteers Marge and Glenn Thorp found out just what kind of litter firsthand on Wednesday, June 18, when they participated in the Conservancy’s first beach cleanup of the season. The most common item they found? Balloons.

The group trekked up and down the beach by Settler’s Rock, scooping up said balloons, cans, rope and even stainless steel fishing leaders. Though there are most likely fewer parties on the beach by the North Light, Biggs said, things still wash up. And there will probably be more litter once the lighthouse opens for the summer.

“They’re bad for the sea life,” Marge Thorp said, holding up a leader. “If they eat this, it will kill them.”

The Nature Conservancy holds at least one program per day (Monday through Friday) throughout the summer. Biggs, a rising senior at Bryn Mawr, said that between two and 10 people participate in the beach clean ups, while family programs, like the Conservancy’s scavenger hunts, draw 30 to 40 people at a time. Any and all volunteers are welcome to attend these programs. The next beach clean up will be on Wednesday, June 25, at Mansion Beach.

Cleanup Dates:

6/25: Mansion Beach

7/2: Scotch Beach

7/9: Town Beach

7/16: West Beach

7/23: Settler’s Rock

7/30: Mansion Beach

8/6: Scotch Beach

8/13: Town Beach

8/20: West Beach

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