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Shore Sweep for Lanier is Sept. 24
Annual effort rids lake of tons of trash
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Lake Lanier Shore Sweep

What: Annual lake trash cleanup in Hall County

When: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24

Where: Eight locations - Aqualand Marina, Balus Creek Boat Ramp, Big Creek Boat Ramp, Lake Lanier Olympic Park, Don Carter State Park, Gainesville Marina, Lanier Islands and Longwood Park

To Register: Email lakeinfo@lakelanier.org.

Scouting is underway on more than 300 locations for Shore Sweep’s trash pickup Sept. 24 in Hall County.

More than 1,000 volunteers are expected to work from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. during the 28th annual event, sponsored by the Lake Lanier Association and Keep Hall Beautiful.

Volunteers will pick up trash bags and receive a shore line area assignment for trash collection at the beginning locations. Eight participating locations are: Aqualand Marina, Balus Creek Boat Ramp, Big Creek Boat Ramp, Lake Lanier Olympic Park, Don Carter State Park, Gainesville Marina, Lanier Islands and Longwood Park.

Volunteers turning in at least one full bag of trash will receive a T-shirt.

Advance registration is not required, but recommended.

“It does help us in scheduling shoreline coverage,” said Joanna Cloud, executive director of the Lake Lanier Association.

To register, email lakeinfo@lakelanier.org.

To coordinate the lake cleanup, organizers are using TrashOut, an app allowing users to take a picture of big and small trash and give its exact location.

More than 700 reports of trash were reported with the app for the 2015 cleanup, Cloud said.

She said the app “helps with efficiency because it helps us dispatch volunteers on the day of the event to go pick up trash as opposed to go look for trash and then pick it up.

“Knowing where the sites are, and having an idea of what kind of trash it is — small items that can be picked up and put in a trash bag versus a large piece of Styrofoam that will need to be towed by an adult with a vessel to a take-out site — helps us deploy the volunteers more effectively on the day of the event.”

Cloud added the app can be downloaded for mobile devices for free.

“When someone is on the lake and sees trash, they launch the app, click the ‘report’ button which takes a photo of the item, and captures the (longitude/latitude) coordinates of where the person holding the device is located,” she said.

Cloud explained the person then answers a few simple questions about the size of the trash, using icons for small-trash bag, medium-wheelbarrow and large-truck. The person then enters a brief description of the trash such as plastic, metal, glass, etc.

“All that information goes into a central database that I then export results from and create the individual area reports,” she said.

Cloud said “advance scouts” were asked to get their reports in by Wednesday.

About 30 tons of trash are collected each year. Everything from bottles to large appliances or pieces of Styrofoam is found.

For more information, see www.lakelanier.org.

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