Operation Beach Respect Moves in New Direction

Operation Beach Respect Moves in New Direction

By: Tom Brueckner, Director #6156LM

 Last fall the Cape Hatteras Seashore Park Service came to NCBBA with the idea of starting an ADOPT-A-BEACH program, much like NCDOT’s Adopt-A-Highway. Because of our past experience of running Operation Beach Respect, they asked for our opinion and input. Much was discussed and we came to an agreement to run a “pilot” beach cleanup at Ramp 23 back in December. The intention of the program is to include the entire Hatteras Island community. The hope is that other organizations and businesses of Hatteras Island will get on board with ADOPT-A-BEACH and choose their own beach ramp or beach parking lot section of beach. The rollout to the public by the Park Service is expected in late March.

What makes ADOPT-A-BEACH different from OBR is instead of having our member volunteers hand out NCBBA material at all the beach access ramps and asking the beachgoers (public) to clean our beaches, we as members will conduct a beach cleanup of our own four times a year at a specific beach access ramp. We have chosen Ramp 23. Some of the key guidelines given to us by the Park Service are as follows:

  1. The program is a three-year commitment with four cleanups per year with two in the off season (November to March) and two in-season (April to October).
  2. The organization gets to choose their top pick of adoptable beach.
  3. The Park Service will provide recognition through signage on the closest access to the adopted ramp or beach, a physical sign for the adopting organization and online on the NPS webpage.
  4. NPS provides all materials to participate including trash bags, grabbers, vests, vehicle markers, etc.
  5. It is the responsibility of the organization to provide supervision and volunteers for each beach cleanup.
  6. In-season closed beach areas will be opened for the ADOPT-A-BEACH cleanup.

To summarize NCBBA’s commitment to ADOPT-A-BEACH

Volunteers from our membership, friends, and family members will be needed to help on our four chosen dates of beach cleanup. Each event will be held on a Saturday morning beginning at 9:00 AM at Ramp 23 parking lot. Volunteers will all need to sign up before heading out on the beach. We anticipate a minimum of 18 beach walkers to cover a designated ½ mile of beach. In addition, 4-5 trucks with a couple pulling a trailer for larger items will be required. We intend to do a clean sweep of all trash, debris, and lumber including burned firewood up the face of the dunes. All trash bags will be taken to the Salvo Day Use Area dumpster and larger items will be left at base of parking lot for the Park Service to haul away.

This program will be headed up by Directors Tom Brueckner and Carol Mowers.