Volunteers needed for North Fork Cd’A River cleanup

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The North Fork Coeur d’Alene River Watershed Advisory Group and the Idaho Panhandle National Forests are inviting community members to participate in the fourth public cleanup day on the North Fork Coeur d’Alene River.

The cleanup, taking place Aug. 19, is part of the Respect the River program, which is a network of citizens and organizations dedicated to caring for the North Fork Coeur d’Alene River.

Snacks and drinks will be provided and participants will have the chance to win a float-fishing trip guided by a member of the North Idaho Flycaster’s Club.

A key part of Respect the River is an educational program to share information about the river and engage river users. Respect the River also sponsors projects to provide a safe and enjoyable range of recreational experiences for river users while ensuring protection of natural resources, private property rights, and economic development.

“Stewardship of the river has improved as a result of our public outreach and education program. Floaters, campers, and boaters are more aware of the harmful impacts of garbage in and around the river and are taking more ownership in caring for the resource,” said Daniel Scaife, Coeur d’Alene River District Ranger.

Past river cleanup days have yielded thousands of pounds of garbage from in and alongside the river.

“There’s still too much garbage along the river, too much glass, and too many aluminum cans on the river bottom and along the banks,” said Kajsa Van de Riet of the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality. “We need a great showing of volunteers to help clean up the river and demonstrate our concern for this beautiful public resource.”

The river cleanup event will take place from 9 a.m. to noon. Check-in for volunteers will take place at the Graham Creek Forest Service dispersed camping area, 14.5 miles up the River Road (Highway 9) north of Kingston. Garbage bags will be provided, but volunteers are encouraged to bring their own gloves and to dress for the conditions. For more information, contact the Coeur d’Alene River Ranger District at (208) 769-3000 or visit Respect the River on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/respecttherivernfcda.

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