September 6, 2014 will mark the 45th Annual Greers Ferry Lake & Little Red River Shoreline Cleanup. Join us during this time as we pick up the shoreline of the lake and river. Afterwards, volunteers are treated to a picnic lunch and entertainment.
In 1970, Greers Ferry Lake had been filled for six years and millions of people came to play, camp, boat, fish, swim and sightsee. They left tons of unsightly litter on the shoreline of the lake and river. Corps funds were not available to clean the entire area so Resident Engineer Carl Garner contacted the Greers Ferry Lake and Little Red River Association and other community and state leaders to develop a volunteer program to attack the problem. On Saturday in September 1970, a team of volunteers set out to clean the 300 miles of shoreline of our 40,000 acre lake.
The first volunteer cleanup campaign has grown into a year-round environmental protection program involving private industry, civic groups, schools, governments and individuals. It has six objectives: reduce and remove litter by volunteer effort, involve as many people as possible, be a continuing educational program, install in the public a sense of pride of ownership of the nation’s public lands and waters, recycle resources and provide a model for others.
The success of our program prompted the first Great Arkansas Cleanup in 1979 which included all Corps of Engineers lakes in Arkansas and the Arkansas River. And in 1984, using the Greers Ferry program as a model, Keep America Beautiful, Inc. initiated the first National Public Lands Day, with the Greers Ferry program as one of the five pilot programs.
Our program is designed to make people aware of the need for a shoreline cleanup and to solicit help from the general public and from groups and civic organizations. We do this by placing PSA’s in local and state newspapers, radio, and by direct mail outs. Flyers are also distributed at all the area campsites and at the Wm. Carl Garner Visitors Center in Heber Springs. We also solicit help from all area Chambers of Commerce. Marina owners volunteer the use of their party barges and are asked to contact their customers who own party barges and solicit their help also.
Volunteers meet at the commercial marinas and the National Fish Hatchery early Saturday morning to pick up trash along designated areas of the shoreline. Party barges are used to transport the volunteers. The trash is taken to collection points around the lake and river. A picnic lunch and entertainment is provided for those who participate in the cleanup.
Come and join us on Sept. 6, 2014 for an enjoyable and festive day at Greers Ferry Lake!
Entertainment scheduled for 2014 Includes:
- Coca-Cola Bottling Co. of Arkansas
- XTO Energy
- Southwestern Energy Company
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – GF Project Office
- Greers Ferry National Fish Hatchery
- Keep Arkansas Beautiful Commission
- Greers Ferry Lake and Little Red River Association
- Fairfield Bay Marina
- Peters Sugar Loaf Marina
- Eden Isle Marina
- Lacey’s Narrows Marina
- Heber Springs Marina
- Smiths Hill Creek Marina
If you would like to be a volunteer, either to pick up the shoreline or road side or by donating your party barge or boat to take others to pre-assigned areas, please contact us via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.