LARCHMONT, N.Y. -- One hour wasn't nearly enough time for Eliot Harrington, who pleaded with her father Todd to stay at the Sheldrake Environmental Center's clean-up event at Manor Beach, where Larchmont families removed 60 bags of garbage and several pieces of wood Saturday.
An estimated 80 people pitched-in to clear 498 pounds of litter from Manor Beach, Dog Beach and Horseshoe Harbor. The Sheldrake had two other locations for the Ocean Conservancy's 26th annual International Cleanup day at the Hommocks Conservation Area and the Larchmont Reservoir Conservancy. All three events were held from 10 a.m. to noon.
This year, the International Clean-Up day was part of the Town of Mamaroneck's 350th anniversary weekend of events.
"I'm all about keeping beaches clean because it keeps the water clean," said Todd, who coaches his daughter's soccer team. "We're just trying to contribute."
Eliot, 8, and her friend Riley Moore, 8, didn't want to leave, but had to get to their afternoon soccer game.
Participants were given a sheet to track the type and amount of items they picked up, which will be compiled by the location leaders to "identify the sources of debris and change the behaviors that cause ocean trash in the first place," according to the Ocean Conservancy website . After they collected everything they could, they weighed their garbage bag and added it to the massive pile at the gate.
"If it's something we teach them to do now, maybe there won't be garbage in 30 years," said Lynda Fisher, whose daughter Sophie, 5 jumped right in. "It may be a little over the head of my two-year-old Henry."
Fisher had another helper, Sam Geroux, 11, who shoveled garbage and debris into one of the 60 black garbage bags, which were later taken away by the Village of Larchmont and Town of Mamaroneck Sanitation Department.
In addition to families, Coca-Cola was represented by a group of 20 employees from Westchester and the Bronx.
Over the past 25 years, 8.5 million volunteers have removed 52,907,756 cigarettes or cigarette filters from the world's beaches and waterways. But the most commonly found item Saturday was a small white, circular piece of plastic that many residents suspected came from the sewer drains.
"It's a small dent in a much larger problem, but I think this event is great," said Church Moore, a Larchmont resident who brought his three-year-old son Griffin. "It's good for them to learn more about recycling and keeping the environment clean."
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