South Florida waterway cleanup set for March

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Volunteers, elected officials and event sponsors will gather this evening to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Broward County Waterway Cleanup.

The event will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Coral Ridge Yacht Club. The cleanup, the county’s largest and longest-running environmental event, will take place March 4 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at multiple locations.

The cleanup is presented by the Florida Inland Navigational District and organized by the Marine Industries Association of South Florida and the Marine Industry Cares Foundation.

“As the Venice of America, Fort Lauderdale recognizes that clean waterways are critical to the economic and environmental sustainability of our city,” Mayor John P. “Jack” Seiler said in a statement.

“To that end we are proud to partner with the Marine Industries Association of South Florida, the Florida Inland Navigational District and the Marine Industry Cares Foundation for this important event that raises environmental awareness, safeguards our marine ecosystems, promotes sustainability and offers families, friends and neighbors an opportunity to work together to help protect one of our most precious natural resources.”

At the event, volunteer registration will be open and sponsorship opportunities, scholarship guidelines, site locations and details for the annual Trash Bash after-party will be announced.

The first Waterway Cleanup was held in the late 1970s and it brought marine industry businesses together with the community and raised awareness among volunteers to the importance of keeping waterways clean.

In 2016 nearly 1,500 land-based volunteers of all ages and 100 boats worked at 35 sites across the county to remove 22 tons of trash and debris from waterways, rivers, and canals.

“We encourage everyone to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Waterway Cleanup by volunteering your time, talent and energy to help preserve and enhance the health, quality and beauty of our waterways, rivers, and canals today and for future generations,” Seiler said.

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