VALDOSTA – Various locations in Lowndes County will get a makeover during a river and creek cleanup Saturday.

Lowndes County, the City of Valdosta and WWALS Watershed Coalition are collaborating to host the cleanup 9-11 a.m., Oct. 9.

Locations are Drexel Park near Valdosta State University (One Mile Branch), Lee Street Pond (One Mile Branch), Sugar Creek near the Salty Snapper, the land between Little and Withlacoochee rivers and Mozell Spells Site near the Highway 31 Georgia–Florida line.

The meeting place for Sugar Creek is the parking lot of Salty Snapper, 1405 Gornto Road, and the meeting place for the land between the rivers is Troupville Boat Ramp, 19664 Valdosta Highway.

"It will be hunting season. Please wear hunting orange. Do not cross the river," WWALS members said in a statement.

The cleanup is related to the Georgia Rivers Alive cleanup program, they stated.

John Quarterman, Suwannee Riverkeeper, said he plans to attend the cleanup near the Salty Snapper.

"There's much less trash in Sugar Creek there than there used to be due to recent cleanups by Valdosta Stormwater," he said. "However, there is plenty of trash in the fences below the parking lot. A few trash cans there would probably help that situation. Meanwhile, we will clean up there."

Quarterman said his wife, Gretchen, WWALS executive director, will set up an information table at Troupville Boat Ramp. 

Bobby McKenzie, WWALS member, will guide volunteers "downstream into the woods on Helen Tapp's private property to clean up there," Quarterman said.

According to organizers, Current Problems, a program from Gainesville, Fla., will attend the event.

Boats are not needed though organizers said there are opportunities to clean water if a person would like to bring a boat.

Volunteers are asked to bring sturdy mud boots or shoes, long pants and clothes that can get wet or dirty, insect repellant, a refillable water bottle and an emergency phone number.

Trash bags and trash pickers, drinking water and snacks will be provided. 

As health precautions, people are asked to stay six feet apart from others not in their households and wear masks when near people not in their households. Masks will be available, organizers stated.

Sign-in sheets given by WWALS will have event waivers, organizers said in a statement, adding WWALS volunteers will be covered by insurance.

To complete the city and county's signup sheet and event waiver is online, https://bit.ly/3uLXMsa.

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