Six Things I Learned during Marine Debris Monday

marine debris mondayWhen I first conceived of Marine Debris Monday in 2016, I just thought of it as a simple way to encourage neighbors to go pick up trash by water a few times this summer. The season seemed to be speeding by us, and I knew if we waited for a BIG Organized Event to take place, we might not get anything done at all. So, I figured starting small was worthwhile. A few evenings picking up trash—with no sign up sheets, no team leader, no rules or regulations—would be better than nothing.

Now that the first Marine Debris Monday has passed, I can say I’ve gotten more out of it than the satisfaction of cleaning up my “backyard” a bit. Here are six things I’ve learned:

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Marine Debris Mondays and YOU

Photo by Mark Bandy

Photo by Mark Bandy

We would love for you to join us for three Marine Debris Mondays: July 31, August 14, and August 28, 2017.

These will be casual clean-up events with no central meeting place, no sign-up sheets. Just a bunch of Back Creek neighbors out on our creek on small boats — canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, fishing boats, whatever — to pick up trash on and along the water.

Most of us will head out at 5:30 after work by paddleboard or kayak with garbage bags in hand (but you may go out whenever you like). If you do participate, please take a picture of the trash you have picked up and send it to molly@backcreekconservancy.org so that we can have a visual of what we have found in the creek. We will participate rain or shine, unless there’s lightning. Questions? Just email.

We’ll send out reminders before each event. Hope you can join us!

Back Creek Conservancy Hosts the Feet for the Creek Walk-a-Thon May 21

The Back Creek Conservancy (BCC) announces its first annual Feet for the Creek Walk-a-Thon on Sunday, May 21 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Walkers of all ages are welcome. Participants will enjoy:

  • A 6K walk around the creek with water stops, and a shorter route for families with small children.
  • Scenic overlooks and points of interest where they can learn about creek conservation, rain gardens, and future projects to protect the creek.
  • An interactive, online map accessible by smart phones.
  • A boat ride from the Davis’ Pub side back to the starting point at Annapolis Sailing School.
  • Live, family-friendly music by Guava Jelly and food and drink trucks at the finish.

Here in America’s Sailing Capital, on the creek with the highest concentration of boats and working boatyards, Back Creek residents are used to seeing water every day, if even just a glimpse of it from our cars.

“Many of us have explored the creek by sailboat, powerboat, or kayak and think we know it well, but how many of us know the perimeter by land?” asks Molly Winans, one of BCC’s board directors. “We thought it would be interesting for neighbors and boaters to get up close and personal to the land side to better understand how and where water and debris flow into the creek.”

The goal of the Feet for the Creek Walk-a-Thon is to gather creek lovers of all ages for a healthy, educational, and FUN morning along the water to raise funds and awareness for creek conservation. Registration costs $25 for adults, with one free child per registered adult ($10 for additional children). Vendor trucks will sell food and drink at the party separately.

BCC is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit based at Port Annapolis. The Conservancy improves, conserves, and speaks for Annapolis’s Back Creek and its watershed, to make it a healthier place to live, work, and play in harmony with nature. Visit backcreekconservancy.org to see an interactive map of the route and register.

To learn more, contact Molly Winans at molly@backcreekconservancy.org or (410) 991-7703

Volunteers Needed for April 1 Project Clean Stream

Anyone interested in picking up trash by volunteering for Project Clean Stream 2017 on April 1 from 9 a.m. to noon may register here.

Following is information about the day of cleanup
1 – Please arrive at the Ellen Moyer Nature Park at 9AM – 7314 Edgewood Road in the upper parking lot to sign-in.
2 – Please bring gloves. We have a few pairs to share but you will probably want your personal gloves.
3 – We will provide trash bags for you to use
4 – At sign-up folks will be assigned to a zone
5 – Scour your zone for rubbish.
6- The private properties listed on the map have agreed that 3 volunteers can enter their property and pick up trash. Please adhere to the 3 person rule. The public properties can have as many eople as necessary.
7 – DO NOT GO ON THE DOCKS! The water is cold and we don’t want folks falling in.
8 – At the end we want to weigh the amount of trash picked up. We will be coming around with a truck to retrieve your bags of trash. Please call the contacts below to schedule a pickup when the bags are full.
9 – When your area is clean, we thank you for your help. If you want to participate in a picture with the pile of trash, come back to the park when done. Otherwise, enjoy the rest of your Saturday.
10 – If you need community service documentation, please indicate at registration and we will email the documentation to you.

Here’s the registration link again.

Contact information:

Lorie Stout – 410-703-8248
David Barker – 410-443-8270 – driver of pickup truck
Molly Winans – 410-991-7703

1 – Ellen Moyer Nature Park – Port Annapolis Marina (reserved for parents with young kids)
2 – Annapolis Sailing School – streets to Port Annapolis Marina
3 – Mears Marina (push button for entry) – 6th, 5th and 4th street to Chesapeake Ave
4 – Slaughter Marina and neighboring marinas – 6th St, Burnside, State to Chesapeake Ave
5 – Jabins Yacht Yard – Edgewood Road – Gemini – Annapolis Maritime Center
6 – Eastport Yacht Center, Muller Marine, Chester Marina – 2nd, 3rd, 4th to Chesapeake Ave
7 – Horn Point Marina, Eastern Ave, 1st St, 2nd St to Chesapeake Ave.
8 – Eastport Shopping Center, Post Office and park behind Post Office
9 – Georgetown East Elem and woods leading down to the creek
10 – Giant Parking Center, Bank of America, Strip Mall with Jerry’s
11 – Green Acres home owners association
12 – SPCA Volunteers
** – Hot Spot of trash 36° 57’16”N 76° 29’25”W (zone 9)

Thank you to Enterprise Rental Car for the donation of a vehicle for trash pickup!!!

Dive and Rescue Team Do Sonar Scan of Creek Bottom

On Sunday, 5 March the Anne Arundel County Fire Department’s Dive and Rescue Team, in partnership with the Back Creek Conservancy (BCC), conducted a sonar scan of the bottom of Back Creek to locate whatever might be down there.

The dive team, led by Captain David Chen, towed an advanced sonar device that looks like a rocket, about 4 feet long, that creates 3D images. The data are still being analyzed, but the good news is that there are no major hazards on the bottom of the creek. Several crab pots, something that might be a refrigerator, and two small boats were spotted.

After the imagery is refined, the next step will be to decide what to raise and remove. Thank you AAFD!