Friday, August 19, 2005

What's tireless, nearly 30-feet in length and lives for the trash on Pittsburgh's riverfronts -- engagement tonight!

No, the riddle's answer is not a parade of rats.

What’s 28 Feet Long and Eats Trash In the Waters Around Pittsburgh?

In 2003, PA CleanWays of Allegheny County, other non-profit groups, private sponsors and volunteers got together to create "The Tireless Project" to clean up tires and other debris in the rivers running through and around Pittsburgh.

Volunteers started by retrofitting a 28-foot pontoon boat for what they called “mild-duty river cleanup” and in the first year picked up over 32 tons of debris.

Last year, thanks to the support of the Sprout Fund, Tireless Fridays were instituted as a way to build the volunteer base and create awareness about riverfront blight.

The special initiative included five after-work volunteer opportunities throughout the summer organized at illegal dumpsites within or near the city center. Volunteers cleaned a blighted area and once the work was done remained at the site to celebrate their accomplishment of restoring the riverbank’s beauty with a waterfront party complete with food, entertainment, and of course tiki torches.

Over 140 volunteers came together to clean over 12.5 tons of trash and removed 185 tires from the shores of the three rivers. In addition, crews of youth volunteers from the Student Conservation Association and Venture Outdoors Summer Youth Programs assisted in cleaning litter from the South Side Waterfront Park and an illegal dump at Duck Hollow on the Monongahela River.

Two Tireless Fridays remain! The next event is August 19th at Duck Hollow from 4:30 p.m. to approximately 10 p.m. Musical performances are being offered by John Hayes and Frets & Feet (Daphne & Charlie Anderson).

"The Tireless Project" is a collaborative effort of PA CleanWays of Allegheny County and Three Rivers Rowing Association. Supporting partners include Venture Outdoors, Friends of the Riverfront, the Student Conservation Association and Pennsylvania American Water Company.

For more information, visit The Tireless Project webpage or to volunteer, email or call 412-381-1301.

Courtesy, Holston & Crisci

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