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Adopt-A-Beach Spring Cleanup attracts youth groups (w/video)

By Elena Watts
April 26, 2014 at 11:03 p.m.
Updated April 26, 2014 at 11:27 p.m.

Patrea Rosser, left, Katelynn Rosser, 7, Laurie Beaver and Natalie Hunt, 7, collect trash at Magnolia Beach with their Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas group at the Adopt-A-Beach Spring Cleanup on Saturday.

MAGNOLIA BEACH - Youth groups arrived in full force at Magnolia Beach for the 28th annual Adopt-A-Beach Spring Cleanup on Saturday.

"Wear a glove on the hand that you pick up trash with," said Kelly Wildes, of Seadrift, to members of various Girl Scout troops. "You want to have one hand free to wipe the hair out of your face, wipe your nose, do whatever you need to do."

Members of the Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas, First United Methodist Church in Port Lavaca and Devereux were among the many young people who helped rid the Texas coastline between Magnolia Beach and Indianola of garbage.

They collected scraps such as cigarette butts and food wrappers with their glove-clad hands, which they deposited in black plastic garbage bags as they walked.

Some unusual items collected included windshield wipers, shotgun shells and refrigerator parts.

Wildes, membership executive for Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas, began cleaning the beaches with the scouts when she started her troop five years ago in Port Lavaca. More than a dozen Girl Scouts from Port Lavaca, Victoria, Seadrift and Goliad earned Adopt-A-Beach patches by participating.

"Next time they're here, they won't leave trash because they have to come back and pick it up," Wildes said.

Katelynn Rosser, of Seadrift, celebrated her 7th birthday on the beach with her Girl Scout friends and their mothers.

"This shows the girls it's good to help the community and to keep it clean," said Patrea Rosser, Katelynn's mother. "It gets good habits started."

More volunteers than expected - 231 - turned out to clean the beach this year, said Rhonda Cummins, the volunteer coordinator for the Magnolia Beach event. She attributed the success of collecting about 2,500 pounds of trash to good weather and greater awareness created by media coverage of the Galveston Bay oil spill.

After the morning cleanup, volunteers gathered at the Magnolia Beach Volunteer Fire Department for hot dogs, chili, chips and water.

King Fisher Beach in Port O'Connor and the pier in Austwell were the other locations in the Crossroads that were cleaned Saturday.

More than 30 stops along the Texas Gulf Coast were included in the Adopt-A-Beach Spring Cleanup. The event is sponsored twice each year by the Texas General Land Office.

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