California Coastal Cleanup Day

September 17, 2016 marks California Coastal Cleanup day. Many citizens picked up trash this morning. The local air resources board declared today a “Spare the Air Day” so I helped clean up the beach nearest home—Doran Regional Park.


A crowd of approximately 50 were at the check-in station. I handed a volunteer my waiver form and ventured out to fill my bucket.

Ninety minutes later my green five-gallon bucket was almost full.


I wore the blue glove to pick up dicier pieces of trash (see below).

I hauled in a little more than 8 pounds of garbage. Most of it was everyday throw-aways: bits of styrofoam, cigarette butts, food wrappers, single-use cups, plastic beverage bottles, and tennis balls that the retriever did not retrieve.

Mixed in were things that suggested untold stories:

  • a good pair of children’s shoes
  • a used condom and its wrapper
  • broken prescription eyeglasses
  • a hand-rolled, and only half-smoked marijuana joint
  • a FULL can of Coors beer
  • a cremation certificate of dated August 4, 2016

Before driving home I took fifteen minutes to make a quick monochromatic watercolor sketch of the beach. (I’m learning to watercolor!)


It’s fun to participate these events. You’ll meet some interesting people and leave feeling good about your efforts to make the world a better place. For more information, visit California Coastal Cleanup.

(Picking up litter feels good each and every time you do it.)