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800 Volunteers Expected to Help Clean Beaches

September 29, 1988

As many as 800 volunteers are expected to donate their time Saturday to clean up 14 Ventura County beaches as part of the fourth annual California Coastal Cleanup.

Last year, 200 area residents scoured beaches to collect about 12 tons of trash, which is mostly made up of plastic materials harmful to marine wildlife, said Julie Pierce, Ventura project coordinator who is a resource recovery specialist for the Ventura Regional Sanitation District.

"The interest has really bloomed this year. This is the fourth year we've done this and this is the first year we received this kind of interest," Pierce said. "It's really snowballed."

The event is sponsored by the California Coastal Commission as part of a monthlong series of cleanup projects called Coastweeks. It is intended to promote an "awareness of and a sense of responsibility for the beaches," said Pierce, who added that similar efforts are simultaneously planned for the state's other coastal areas.

So far, the project has received promises of aid and donations from local businesses and enthusiast clubs. At one beach, 12 members of the Gold Coast Divers Club will police the area beneath the waves while the Toyota Landcruiser Assn. of Ventura transports the filled trash bags to donated recycling dumpsters.

It will be the first time that trash collected by event volunteers will be recycled.

Volunteers for cleanup of beaches in the Ventura Harbor vicinity will gather at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Channel Islands National Park visitor center in Ventura. Those interested in cleaning 13 other beaches in the county may call (805) 658-4632 for additional information.

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