PHOTO: Discarded trash is strewn along the Guadalupe River on Aug. 21. Photo contributed by Ashley Magee.
Keep Victoria Beautiful’s upcoming Fall Sweep will cover both land and water with help from a grant program aimed at keeping waterways clean.
Keep Victoria Beautiful applied for and received a $500 ZenWTR Waterway Cleanup Grant from Keep Texas Beautiful. The grant is sponsored by ZenWTR and must be used to support beautification and cleanup projects that improve Texas waterways and water quality.
“Sponsored grants like those provided through Keep Texas Beautiful play an important role in Keep Victoria Beautiful’s mission,” said Community Appearance Manager Christy Youker. “The flexibility of Keep Texas Beautiful’s grant programs allows us to carry out projects promptly and use funds in an impactful manner.”
Keep Victoria Beautiful officials plan to use some of the grant funding to support the Fall Sweep on Sept. 24. For the first time, this citywide cleanup will include the Guadalupe River. Some volunteers will be sent to Riverside Park to pick up trash along the river.
ZenWTR is sponsoring the grant program as part of its mission to divert 50 million pounds of ocean-bound plastic by 2025, according to a news release from ZenWTR.
“We’re proud to partner with Keep Texas Beautiful through this initiative, supporting local affiliates in cleanup and education projects that will have a lasting positive environmental impact,” said ZenWTR Vice President of Marketing Jessica Qussar.
Also on Sept. 24, Parks & Recreation and Explore Victoria will partner with Flow Paddle Co for the Riverside Row, a kayak race with an environmentally conscious twist. Kayakers will be encouraged to pick up trash during the race to have minutes deducted from their total race time.
“Texas rivers are such a valuable resource, and we want to keep them clean and beautiful so others can enjoy them,” said Ashley Magee, owner of Flow Paddle Co. “We even provide mesh bags with our kayak rentals so that kayakers can pick up trash on the river.”
To sign up for the Fall Sweep, or to sign up to be notified of future cleanups, visit www.victoriatx.gov/kvb.