Cleanups To Date

Opportunities to participate will be updated here on a regular basis.

Upcoming Cleanups

  • Keep Capitola Salty
    1st. Saturday of every month
    Join Keep Capitola Salty for a cleanup.
    Meet at Esplanade Park at 9:00 am.
  • Save Our Shores
    • June 8, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. — Beach cleanup at Cowell Beach!
      Registration is required
      Meet Up Location: Please meet us at the base of the stairs to Cowell Beach.
      Facilities & Accessibility: Restrooms and drinking fountains are available onsite. Metered lot and street parking is limited, so please plan accordingly.
    • June 15, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. — Beach cleanup at Sunny Cove Beach!
      Registration is required
      Meet Up Location: Please meet us at the end of Johan’s Beach Drive at the main entrance to the beach.
      Facilities & Accessibility: There are no restrooms available, and no drinking fountains on site. Parking is limited, so please plan accordingly.
  • Coastal Watershed Council
  • Join us for Community Cleanups in the Pajaro Valley!

    Stay tuned for the release of the location community Service hours are given!

    • June 27, 2024
    • July 25, 2024
    • August 22, 2024
    • September 26, 2024
    • October 24, 2024
    • November 21, 2024
  • Every Monday Main Beach Cleanup in front of Board Walk at 8:00AM (join us!)

    "We really need the community to step up and help clean Main Beach, especially after Memorial Day. Today we found two dead sea birds, a dead sea otter pup along with what we regularly pick up, numerous cans, food packaging waste and cigarette butts."
    - citizen activist Donna Maurillo

Cleanups Accomplished

Green Valley Bridge Cleanup

August 30, 2022

Nestled between a shopping center and the rich and highly valued farmland of the Pajaro Valley, is the meandering Corralito’s Creek.

Beneath the Green Valley Bridge, a landscape of willow, oak and towering eucalyptus shade tiny fish that eke out a living in the gravel pools. Unfortunately, over the last number of years this natural landscape not intended for humans, has become a magnet to homeless encampments.

Before the coordinated efforts of the Trash Talkers, City of Watsonville and Santa Cruz County worked independently to monitor the problem but could not address the constant return of individuals who illegally camped in a riparian corridor, leaving drug paraphernalia, human feces, trash, and debris in this sensitive area.  Now working in tandem, both agencies are more effective and coordinated this cleanup. “It’s amazing to see the impact our teams make on the environment when we work together. We met the Sheriffs, Watsonville Works and the County team this morning.” Said John Moreno from City of Watsonville Solid Waste Division. “We pulled out a lot of garbage that was going to end up in the creek, including soap bottles and other pollutants.  A Big win for water quality and the fish that were present.” Continued Moreno.  Wetlands Watch will be involved in developing a future plan for vegetation restoration and control.

The results of this clean up amassed: 2- 8 yard containers, 2 city and 2 county trucks full of garbage cleaned out of Corralito’s Creek.  The encampments have been disbanded and the area is under surveillance to prevent reestablishment.

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Click to view the flyer

The above Flyer was for volunteer cleanup day in December of 2021. Since that time, the sensitive Corralito’s Creek area required cleanup over and over again. Now, Trash Talker agencies working together, are effectively addressing the litter problem to keep these areas clean.

Press: https://pajaronian.com/cleanup-highlights-expansion-of-homeless-work-program/

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Tiny Fish in Corralito’s Creek under Green Valley Bridge.
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Trash Talkers collaborative efforts between City of Watsonville and Santa Cruz County results in major cleanup of encampments in Corralito’s Creek’s sensitive habitat. Litter damages environmentally sensitive riparian corridors.
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Corralito’s Creek at Green Valley Bridge - Before Cleanup.
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Corralito’s Creek at Green Valley Bridge - After removal of debris.
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Santa Cruz County Sheriffs have been helpful participants in encampment removal and cleanups.
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Volunteers celebrating after the Green Valley Bridge cleanup.

Ongoing Cleanups: City of Watsonville

Trash Talkers would like to highlight the great work of City of Watsonville Solid Waste Division: Led by John Moreno, nine employees take care of 400 acres of city lots, trails, right aways and open space. Public safety and environmental safety is their priority. Seasonal work includes: fire fuel reduction, mowing, habitat restoration and masonry removal, species removal. The Biggest part of their work has become removing litter, shopping carts and illegal encampments from our properties. They spend three days a week with three employees each day doing nothing but cleaning up illegal dumping and camps.

Partnering with other Trash Talker agencies and nonprofits regularly, including Santa Cruz County, Caltrans, the Railroad, and Fish and Wildlife, they are addressing public dumping. Wetlands Watch and other nonprofits help to coordinate cleanups and develop long term solutions. Wetlands Watch helps with the line of sight clearing and restoration projects, that keep environmentally sensitive areas like the slough open. The Police Department and other agencies participate when encampments are being established. Watsonville Works is helping people connect with resources.

Watsonville Works has helped dozens of people move off the streets of Watsonville through volunteering to help clean up the litter and gain resources to find housing, jobs and leave homelessness behind. The Police Department, and mental health make sure it's safe for Solid Waste Division crews to do their job. The city of Watsonville Solid Waste Division has monthly community neighborhood cleanups in the city, —volunteer cleanups every month. We have the Nature Center that does cleanups, and field trip groups around the trails. They are supported by the Parks Department. City of Watsonville has a bulky item pickup program to assist individuals to take their items to the dump at no charge. This will prevent illegal dumping of mattresses, furniture etc.

Every year we pick up thousands of yards of garbage  - 2000 yards last year!

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