Patcong Creek Cleanup May 22

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The Patcong Creek Cleanup is in its 15th year. (Photo courtesy of the Patcong Creek Foundation)

The 15th annual Patcong Creek Cleanup is planned for Sunday, May 22, starting at 9:30 a.m. It is returning after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

For 15 years, the Linwood Environmental Commission has been hosting the event.

The cleanup was started in 2005 and has grown over the years thanks to many partners, including the City of Linwood, the Atlantic County Utilities Authority, the New Jersey Clean Communities Program, the Somers Point Green Team, the Linwood Green Team, Love Blue Stockton Chapter and Ocean Heights Marina, according to a news release.

The cleanup includes the entire tidal creek from the mouth of the Great Egg Harbor Township in Somers Point to Bargaintown Pond in Linwood.

There are four drop-in/cleanup locations – Poplar Avenue Bridge, Hamilton Avenue Ramp, Ocean Heights Avenue and Somers Point-Mays Landing Road.

All volunteers are asked to register in advance by completing an entry form that is available at Linwood City Hall and on the City of Linwood’s web site at www.linwoodcity.org.

Volunteers will meet at the Linwood Public Works Building on Hamilton Avenue between 9:30 a.m. and 10 a.m.

The ACUA will distribute free T-shirts, plastic bags and gloves to all who participate and then they will be dispatched to one of the four cleanup areas.

This is a rain or shine event.

Boaters will patrol the water and pick up floating litter, while land lovers will clean up the sides of the creek and roadside areas that border the creek. Those with motorboats will assist paddlers by picking up their full bags and larger items found along the creek.

To reward the volunteers, a picnic will be held at the Ocean Heights Marina located at 5001 Ocean Heights Avenue. The picnic starts at noon. Sandwiches, subs, pizza and other goodies will be provided. Organizers will give prizes for the muddiest volunteer, best trash found and other categories.

The Patcong Creek is a tributary of the federally designated wild and scenic Great Egg Harbor River. It is the home of a pair of bald eagles, ospreys, herons and its own kayak livery, the Paddle Shack.

The event could not be held without the generous sponsors, including the Linwood Public Works Department, Lang’s Garden Center, Glenn Insurance, La Pizzatega, Primo Pizza, Playland’s Castaway Cove, Manco & Manco Pizza, The Cheese Board and others.

Preregistration is required.

To register call Leigh Ann Napoli, Linwood City Clerk, at (609) 927-4108, or stop by Linwood City Hall to complete a registration form.