Many wonderful Manatee County people have been turning out today for cleanup efforts all over the place. And even Earth Day, next week, isn't the only good day to enjoy the outdoors.
The Manatee County Natural Resources Department has 12 nature preserves -- and has picked out some of their favorite photos of them on Flickr for you to look at before you visit. You could visit one of these nature preserves every week, which would give you three month's worth of nature preserve visits. And at the end of the third month you could start over again; the seasons would have changed so everything would be fresh again.
One thing to remember about the litter pick-up efforts you see happening around Manatee County today: you don't need a special event to pick up a piece of trash you see in your neighborhood or in a local park. Beyond that, there are all kinds of Adopt-A-Highway, Adopt-A-Road, Adopt-A-Shore, and even Adopt-A-Spot programs you can join. This is probably something you'll want to do as part of a group, but perhaps there's a small Spot near you that you could adopt on your own. Call the Keep Manatee Beautiful people and ask. It can't hurt.
We have several articles and a video about volunteer cleanup efforts coming at you. The video is of people de-littering Wares Creek in Bradenton. While filming, I asked one of the volunteers what he'd do if he caught one of the litterers. "You're recording," he said, "so I'd better not tell you."
To me, this is the sad part of Earth Day and pre-Earth Day cleanup efforts and, indeed, of all volunteer cleanup efforts: that there would be no need to pick up trash from our roads and parks if no one put trash there in the first place.
So, even if you are not going to bestir yourself to help with cleanup efforts, please try to make them less necessary by... not littering.
Just think: if no one littered, the cleanup volunteers could spend a whole bunch of time improving the world instead of fighting trash.
Wouldn't that be nice?
Thanks for reading,
Robin 'Roblimo' Miller
Editor & Reporter
The Bradenton Times
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