The 24th annual Eagle River Clean Up seeks volunteers for Sept. 8 event | VailDaily.com

The 24th annual Eagle River Clean Up seeks volunteers for Sept. 8 event

By donating just three hours of your time, you can help improve the watershed in Eagle County. Saturday, September 8 marks the 24th annual Eagle River Cleanup, which goes beyond the Eagle River. Nearly 70 miles of banks along Gore Creek, the Eagle River and the Upper Colorado River, along with tributaries, are part of this county-wide effort.

Each September, 50 teams of nearly 400 volunteers are assigned a stretch of shoreline to clean up. "Teams can be comprised of co workers, clubs, families, friends and neighbors. It's a great team bonding opportunity," said Kate Isaacson, projects and events coordinator with the Eagle River Watershed Council. "We have teams with anywhere from 2 people to dozens of people in a group."

Eagle River Watershed Council (ERWC) advocates for the health and conservation of the Upper Colorado and Eagle River basins through research, education, and projects. The Watershed Council strives to protect and enhance the high-quality natural, scenic and economic values that the rivers and tributaries provide to the citizens, visitors and wildlife of the Eagle River and Colorado River watersheds located in Eagle County.

As a thank you to all the volunteers, Vail Resorts Epic Promise, the presenting sponsor, hosts a barbecue from noon to 2 p.m. at the Broken Arrow Cafe in Arrowhead with live music from members of Airborn, free food and free beer from Crazy Mountain Brewery.

Each participant will also get a commemorative t-shirt and the teams are asked to bring in their most interesting piece of trash to the event. The ERWC's board of directors vote on the items and give out the Most Unusual Trash Award. "We give out a singing Big Mouth Billy Bass fish trophy that the winners get to keep for the year," Isaacson said.

To help clean up a resource that provides so much for our valley, contact the Eagle River Watershed Council to register at isaacson@erwc.org 970.827.5406. Free pre-registration is required to get you set up with a team.