Annual Yuba River Cleanup set for Sept. 17 |

Annual Yuba River Cleanup set for Sept. 17

A volunteer at last year's Yuba River Cleanup keeps busy. This year's event is Sept. 17.
Submitted photo |


What: SYRCL’s 19th Annual Yuba River Cleanup

When: Saturday, Sept. 17

Cleanup from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Volunteer Appreciation Party at Pioneer Park from 1 – 4 p.m.

Where: 30+ sites in the Bear and Yuba River watersheds

How: Register online at: All registered volunteers receive free lunch at Pioneer Park.

For the 19th year, the South Yuba River Citizens League will unite the community at its Yuba River Cleanup on Sept. 17.

Since 1998, Yuba lovers have rallied to remove 195,000 pounds of trash and recycling from the watershed.

“Keeping the river clean, safe and healthy requires all us who love the Yuba to be active stewards. I’ve taken complaints about the litter problem at the Yuba all summer. The time to do something is now. I’m inviting the community to join this high impact event. Dedicating a few hours of work on Sept 17 will make a significant difference for the health of the Yuba and Bear rivers,” said Caleb Dardick, Executive Director of SYRCL.

According to Dardick, “This effort is supported by State Parks, the Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, the Army Corps of Engineers, Nevada Irrigation District, the Cities of Grass Valley and Nevada City, Nevada and Yuba Counties, Waste Management, as well as dozens of businesses, clubs, and school groups. We’re committed to working at 30 or more sites, we just need the volunteer power to do it,” said Caleb Dardick, SYRCL’s Executive Director.

Last fall, 761 volunteers participate in the Cleanup and removed nearly 15,000 pounds of recyclables from approximately 90 miles of river, creek and lake shoreline at sites within the Bear and Yuba River watersheds.

“This massive cleanup effort would not be possible without the dedication of hundreds of volunteers devoted to protecting our local waterways,” said Jenn Tamo, SYRCL’s Community Engagement Manager. “We invite you to join this incredible community effort! Register to volunteer online at”

On Sept. 17, volunteers will embark on a watershed-wide hunt to rid the river of everything from micro-garbage like cigarette butts, bottle caps, shards of glass, and dog waste, to large and outlandish items such as washers and trailers. After the Cleanup, volunteers are invited to the Volunteer Appreciation Party in Pioneer Park, Nevada City from 1pm-4pm to enjoy music, great company, and a no-host beer garden with tasty brews from Jernigan’s Tap House, Three Forks Brewery, Crispin Cider Co., and Tahoe Mountain Brewery. Registered volunteers will receive a delicious complimentary lunch, donated in part by the BriarPatch Co-op.

Keeping the river from being trashed is more than a one-day-a-year activity. Since 2012, a group of dedicated volunteer River Ambassadors have spent every summer weekend educating folks at the four major river crossings about how to keep the river clean and safe. This dedicated team promotes an ethic of responsible, non-polluting use of the river by speaking one-on-one with visitors at crossings, beaches and on trails. Using a friendly, non-confrontational approach, River Ambassadors bring awareness to the polluting impacts of trash and dog waste, the dangers of broken glass, and the catastrophic potential of wildfire. To date, River Ambassadors have spoken to over 26,000 river-goers, removed 29,000 pieces of trash, and collected nearly 4,000 piles of dog waste. These advocates work diligently to keep our rivers healthy by providing dog waste and trash bags to recreationists, too.

“The River Ambassador program and Yuba River Cleanup produce tangible benefits to our community, but these efforts have real, concrete costs. Volunteers, and even those who can’t make it to the Cleanup, can help support a clean river year-round by asking friends and family to sponsor their day of service. No donation is too small, gifts of $5 or $10 add up quickly.” said Tamo.

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