Volunteers clean up the Red River

By Brittany Pieper – email

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) – This summer Adam Willard went out on the Red River, but when he tried to paddle through the water what he found upset him.

"The trash that we found on the banks was just overwhelming," he said.

Instead of ignoring the problem, like so many people do every day, Willard decided to try and change it.

"Educate people to keep the river clean and get them coming back. Just let them know what's in their back yard," said Willard.

We organized the Bayou Chapter of the Ozark Society's 1st ever Red River Clean-Up. The Ozark Society is a national organization that focuses on wildlife conservation, education, and recreation. Saturday morning more than 150 volunteers showed up with canoes, boats, and gloves to help out. The clean-up covered a 5 mile stretch, and the volunteers had their work cut out for them. On just 1 sand bank they picked up bags full of trash.

"This is our first stop, and we've got plenty of beer cans, bottles, glass, paper, lots of recyclables. There's enough trash for everybody in town to come pick up," said one volunteer.

After they picked up the trash, volunteers sorted through it and took out any recyclables. At the end of the day they had picked up 2 trash trailers full of waste and filled another two large recycling containers.

They hope their efforts will help, but also say the problem won't stop until everyone starts picking up their own trash. Organizers hope to make the clean-up an annual event.

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