Volunteers spiff up South Surrey during Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup

SOUTH SURREY — There they were. A couple of beer cans and a plastic soda bottle, floating enticingly just out of reach in the pond behind the pump house at the northeast corner of Blackie Spit.

Don Mark – a veteran of events like this – spotted them first. He whipped out his “garbage grabber” (essentially a really long pair of tongs) and stretched out over the water as far as he could without falling in. He came up three feet short.

Now it was Kayla Ko’s turn. Enlisting the aid of fellow “cleaner” Violet Uyeno, who held Ko’s left hand from the shore while Ko balanced precariously on a log boom, she came within a few inches.

The final attempt – a mixture of youthful bravery and flat-out will – was something to behold. Ko and good friend Tyler Ratcliffe, both students Earl Marriott Secondary, threw caution to the wind, creeping, together, ever so slowly along the boom until they’d left land completely behind.

Mission accomplished.

The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup came to South Surrey’s Blackie Park on April 26, and it was by every measure a success.

There was retiree Brian Lissimore, a Birds on the Bay member, patrolling the beach with his garbage grabber and telling anyone who’ll listen that, “It’s people that make the mess, it’s people that have to clean it up.”

There were first-timers Lihui Huang and son Alex Zhang, plodding through the grass, amazed at the amount of small stuff they’d found.

And there was Trevor and Jodie Perry. They’d hosted a sleepover the night before for son Will, and today decided they’d bring the bunch of them to Blackie Spit for a little environmental activism.

Along with 200 cigarette butts (yes, they kept track), they also found a rather nice wooden stool.

Ultimately, says Margaret Cuthbert of the Friends of Semiahmoo Bay Society – the local environmental organization that manages the Blackie Spit segment of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup – 52 people took part, working an average of 2.5 hours each.

And it’s not too late to get involved. The Cleanup happens twice a year every year – once in the spring and again in the fall. Interested parties merely join a Cleanup in their area or organize one of their own. Currently, there are dozens of Cleanups already registered in Surrey alone.

Head on over to Shorelinecleanup.ca to plan your logistics.

Just Posted

Measles case confirmed within Fraser Health region

One case within Fraser Health is related to the outbreak in three Vancouver schools.

PHOTOS: Surrey’s Holy Cross to shoot for Fraser Valley title against Fox foes

Crusaders top Lord Tweedsmuir Thursday to earn trip to regional final at Langley Events Centre

Heritage Surrey launches time-lapse mapping tool

It matches local historical images to modern-day locations

UPDATE: Delta man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside North Delta elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Surrey RCMP asks for public’s help finding missing 52-year-old

Police say William Michaels last seen on Feb. 19

Fashion Fridays: Must have wardrobe basics

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Death at Revelstoke Mountain Resort

Cause of death has not been released

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

Cryptocurrency exchange CEO who suddenly died leaves Kelowna house in will

Gerald Cotten, holding the keys to money tied up in his virtual currency exchange, died in December.

Regulator’s report, coming today, unlikely to settle Trans Mountain pipeline battle

The Trans Mountain pipeline will remain a controversial topic both in the political ring and out

5 to start your day

Australian woman dies in avalanche at Whistler, two boys OK after falling through Coquitlam lake and more

Australian woman killed in avalanche at Whistler

The woman and her partner were reportedly rescued by ski patrol, but she did not survive

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

Trudeau tells Canadians to listen to clerk in SNC-Lavalin matter

Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick delivered a blunt assessment at the House of Commons justice

Most Read