HARLINGEN — Pristine Texas beaches don’t always stay that way.
So the 22nd Annual Winter Texan Beach Cleanup, sponsored by the Cameron County Parks Department and the Texas General Land Office, will make sure they do on Feb. 9 at Andy Bowie Park, also known as Beach Access 2.
“This particular event was initially started in order to give our local Winter Texans an opportunity to also participate in an organized cleanup,” county parks Director Joe E. Vega said via email this week. “The Valley’s Winter Texans have been great and are always willing to participate. They love our beaches and they know how important it is to keep our beaches clean and beautiful.”
Vega said the annual cleanup effort actually has grown as more and more full-time Texans have joined the party. Last year, he said, the event set a record with 721 total volunteers and 54,075 pounds of trash collected from Andy Bowie Park all the way to a point approximately five miles north.
The parks director said 400 volunteers have already registered and he hopes the event can exceed last year’s volunteer numbers.
“We recommend volunteers wear closed shoes (no sandals), sun block, cap/hat and a jacket in case of cool temperatures,” Vega said. “The county will provide latex gloves, trash bags and a data card with a pencil to document their findings.”
Vega said the strong participation during the Winter Texan Beach Cleanup is something which does not go unnoticed by either his department or the Texas General Land Office.
“We greatly appreciate their hard work and efforts in keeping our beaches clean and beautiful,” Vega said.