“We do our cleanup with a kayak group and kayak outfitter in two locations,” said Capt. Garschagen. “It’s a very cool event and it makes a big difference to the health of the waters each year.
“Because we are working on the water, we see debris on a daily basis that you can’t see from land,” he continued. “It is shoreline that is hard to access. There is still leftover debris from Hurricane Sandy, including big chunks of foam, garbage bags and plastic. The kayaks can only carry a little bit of trash and we act as a mothership and expedite the cleanup.”
During last year’s Riverkeeper Sweep, more than 1,400 volunteers removed 38 tons of trash and planted more than 300 trees. The volunteers also assist in waterfront service projects in more than 70 communities from New York City to Albany. Volunteers will mulch recently planted native grasses and repair fencing designed to exclude Canada Geese so more sensitive wading birds have sanctuary.
“We also have a special promotion where we donate $5 to Riverkeeper for every Sea Tow membership sold during boat shows,” Capt. Garschagen said. “Our members become Riverkeeper members as well, and it helps everyone.”
In addition, on Friday, May 9, Riverkeeper and the Randall’s Park Alliance will play host to a special invitation-only kickoff event to restore a rare pocket of wildlife habitat in Manhattan at Randall’s Island Park.
The Riverkeeper Sweep connects volunteers to dozens of shoreline cleanups, tree-plantings and other service projects. It is the signature New York event in the Waterkeeper Alliance SPLASH Series event, presented nationally by Toyota, and designed to connect people to their waterways.
Sea Tow Central Hudson is based in Stony Point, N.Y. Capt. Garschagen and his team of five U.S. Coast Guard-licensed Captains utilizes two 26-foot Parker monohull boats and one 26-foot Twin Vee power catamaran.
For more information Sea Tow Central Hudson, please call 845-561-0008 or visit seatow.com/centralhudson
For more information on the Riverkeeper Sweep visit www.riverkeeper.org.
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