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River cleanup set for October 23

Photo by Ricki Barker

Photo by Ricki Barker

LEESBURG, Ga. -- After having to frantically scrounge around for enough canoes to hold the more than 100 volunteers who have already signed up for Saturday's Rivers Alive cleanup, Lee County Code Enforcement Officer Jim Wright said Tuesday night things are finally in place for the county's fourth year of participating in a national beautification event.

"We found out at the last minute that we weren't going to be able to use some of the canoes we'd been counting on," said Wright, who along with Lee Zoning Administrator Marshall Wilcox is the local Rivers Alive organizer. "I was able to round up some canoes in Americus, and we're getting some from Chehaw Park.

"I think we're getting close to having enough canoes for all the volunteers."

That's a good thing, because team leaders Rick Wheeler, Ned Newcomb, Jim Quinn, Ken Collins, Hank Vick, Al Schutte and Hugh Morris are assembling their troops, preparing for Saturday's cleanup of portions of the Flint River and the Kinchafoonee and Muckalee creeks.

Volunteers will meet with team leaders at 8 a.m. Saturday and boats are expected to enter the water around 9 a.m. After the groups leave the waterways, they'll meet for a lunch of grilled chicken prepared by award-winning griller Danny McTyeire and members of the Lee Sherrif's Office's competition grill team. Lunch will be served at the Shriner's Club on Lover's Lane Road.

Wright said volunteers should bring old shoes, bottled water/soft drinks, snacks, a towel, sun screen, bug repellant and a camera for photos he'll collect at his jwright@lee.ga.us e-mail address.

"I'd like to thank everyone for getting involved in this event," Wright said. "It is my opinion that we have made a very big difference in the appearance of these waterways since we began to participate in Rivers Alive four years ago."

People interested in participating in the Rivers Alive event can still contact team leaders to add their names to the list of volunteers.