On March 7, 2020, approximately 1,200 volunteers participated in the 43rd Broward County Waterway Cleanup, the county’s largest and longest-running environmental event. The event is presented by the Florida Inland Navigation District (F.I.N.D.) and National Marine Suppliers and organized by the Marine Industries Association of South Florida (MIASF).
The 2020 cleanup event resulted in the collection of nearly 25 tons of trash and debris from 35 sites across the county. Volunteers, ranging in age from 9 months to 81, participated on land and in water with 120 vessels, including boats, kayaks and paddleboards.
“We had beautiful weather, dedicated volunteers, and a great time,” noted MIASF Event Coordinator, Nicole Hoekstra, “The annual Waterway Cleanup is a perfect day to celebrate all that Broward County has to offer, while taking part in keeping it clean,” she said.
Following the cleanup, volunteers were invited to attend the Trash Bash Thank You party at MIASF Headquarters, where participants were treated to live music, free food and beverages and more than a dozen raffle prizes.
In addition to the Waterway Cleanup, MIASF hosts middle school and high school recycled-art, essay, and short-story contests each year. Multiple scholarships are awarded during the Trash Bash, including:
- $500 Essay Contest Winner: Bria Weisblat, Western High School
- $250 Short Story Contest Winner: Miles D’Errico, New River Middle School
- $250 High School Recycled-Art Contest Winners: Destiny Pantoja, South Broward High School
- $250 Middle School Recycled-Art Contest Winner: Riley McClanahan, New River Middle School
Sponsors of the Broward County Waterway Cleanup included: 4Ocean, Bluewater Yachting (USA), Boatsetter, Broward County, Carefree Boat Club, City of Fort Lauderdale, Cliff Berry, Coastal Tank, Coral Springs Improvement District, CRYC Sailing & Water Sports Foundation, Derecktor Shipyard, Dometic, Dumpster King, Environmental Marine, Florida Inland Navigation District, Gold Coast Marine Distributors, Harbour Towne Marina, IsoFlex, JM Family Enterprises, Land and Sea, Lauderdale Isles Water Management District, Margate Waterfront Foundation, National Marine Suppliers, National Save the Sea Turtle Foundation, City of Oakland Park, Resolve Marine Group, Rush Roll-Off, The Chappell Group, Trac Ecological, Water Taxi and Wright Maritime Group.
Next year’s cleanup is scheduled to take place on Saturday, March 6, 2021. For more information, visit www.waterwaycleanup.org.