Friday, March 23, 2007

Boxin' Trash Out

I don't know why, but long ago I got on some geocaching email list and so occasionally I get updates on what those other treasure hunters are out there doing in the woods. Today I saw this:

Cache In Trash Out Day is an opportunity for geocachers worldwide to make a positive contribution to our environment by cleaning up parks and other cache-friendly locations. Through our volunteer efforts, we help preserve the natural beauty of our outdoor resources.

And I thought to myself, what a great thing and us letterboxers cannot be outdone by those "others" (no offfense intended). It reminded me of a national program I used to participate in organized by climbers in which every fall we would clean up a local area.

I was wondering, is there such an organized event for letterboxing, either nationally or locally? I haven't been involved long enough, so I thought you guys might do something.

If not, how would you feel about such a program? Be sure to include how often you would be willing to participate in a year. I know I would be willing to organize special "clean-up" events with special clues and prizes. We could easily coordinate these with state and local park officials. I have found it a rewarding way to help overcome the misperception concerning the impact of an activity on local parks and further reinforce the Leave No Trace philosophy we all follow. Also it's a good way to give back to the places we all love.



Lnd-Crzr said...

JeenyJ came up with and organized a pretty succesful project in which folks who attended the Fall LB Arts & Crafts Gatheirng brought items needed by the local Rainbow house. I think it was a great idea.

I think we all pick up trash on our hikes but if we want to do somehting more oranized I'm in.


McMonkey Mom said...

Columbia has an annual "Clean Up Columbia" Day. Groups are encouraged to organize and clean up one area. There is a big picnic after the clean up for all the volunteers. Maybe this would be a good starting point without having to organize a drive of our own. My husband has always been involved in this project with our kids. It's usually a Saturday in the spring. (I work like mad on the weekends thru the summer.) As soon as I hear any info on this event I will let you know.

McMonkey Mom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Outdoor Girls said...

Earth Day is April 22nd.
The Girl Scouts have a clean up day at one of the camps to celebrate Earth Day. So of course we will be at one of the camps.
Ours parks & rec hosts events for Earth Day at well. It usually involves cleaning up and maintenance on one of the trails.
Outdoor Girls

Perdu said...

Well...seeing that so many others have a clean-up event, I think you might be on to something, ahistory.

I'm in. As to frequency...I'm flexible.

McMonkey Mom said...

Here is a link to info about clean up Columbia Day. Groups must register by April 4th. The event date is April 14th. Let me know if anyone needs more info!

rozebud said...

I planted a box yesterday in a St. Louis City park, and plan to add something to the clues along the lines of "please feel free to bring a bag and pick up trash along your way". We picked up some, but I stoopidly neglected to bring a bag and refrained from grabbing some particularly nasty looking trash.

I don't know that I would participate in an actual EVENT; it would depend on the schedule and location. But we already do try to leave any area we hike cleaner than we found it!

Fox-fyr said...

Actually, the link is
(you left out the "a" in Columbia).
My schedule is way too full to add any more events to my calendar, but have fun.
(burning the midnight oil again)

McMonkey Mom said...

Whoops! Thanks fox-fyr for catching my goof. Sometimes I type too fast! :) I am off that weekend and am planning on doing some cleaning up in an area. If anyone is interested in joining me for a group event please contact me at I would be happy to be our leader and take a head count for shirts and meal tickets. Do you have an idea for an area? Let me know! It could be a fun day! Who knows...maybe we could box later that afternoon!

Fox-fyr said...

I did some checking. The Friends of Rock Bridge are sponsoring a clean up of Rock Bridge Memorial State Park in conjunction with the Clean Up Columbia Day. It is April 14. Call 815-9255 (FORB office)to register. The plan is to clean up along Hwy 163 from 9 a.m. to noon, and remove invasive species and old fences from 1-3 p.m. You can sign up for either spot or both.--Fox-fyr

queenbusick said...

My DD & I recently participated in Earthworks a Learning Exchange in KC. She has been bugging me to do some sort of trash clean up since then..but I think you just gave me the idea to just clean where I box to start.
It will stimulate her boxing interest because she gets a little girly about sweat sometimes :-)

Clyde Bentley said...

A simple but effective project might be to have everyone in the group go out on the same weekend -- to find a box or check on their own -- but come back to a central dumpster with their bag of collected litter.