By Joseph Bonfiglio, Honolulu District Public Affairs
More than 50 volunteers picked up trash at Fort DeRussy in Waikiki in honor of National Public Lands Day on Sept. 19. The Corps of Engineers’ Pacific Regional Visitor Center (RVC) coordinated the event which was supported by Corps employees, U.S. Army Transporters from the 545th Transportation Company, and Punahou Junior ROTC cadets.
Also participating were Pacific Ocean Division Commander, Brig. Gen. Jeffrey L. Milhorn and POD Command Sgt. Major Federico E. Boyce, and Honolulu District Commander Lt. Col. Chris and Mrs. Maria Crary and District Deputy Commander Maj. Brennan V. Wallace.
About 35 cadets led by Punahou JROTC Commander Lt. Col. Robert Takao concentrated their efforts on cleaning up the beach berm behind historic Battery Randolph.
“We’ve been doing this for the last nine or so years, and we always get willing volunteers. It’s never hard to get the cadets to come out because they realize how good it is for our world to do things like this. I’m really proud of them,” Takao said.
Volunteers picked up over 12 large bags of trash from the area.
“We’re happy about educating the public on the importance of preserving and improving our precious natural and cultural treasures,” said Angela Jones, head Park Ranger for the RVC.
National Public Lands Day is the largest single-day volunteer effort for public lands in the U.S. It began in 1994 and focuses on education and partnerships to care for the nation’s natural treasures.
Last year, more than 16,000 volunteers participated in National Public Lands Day activities at 107 USACE lakes. The volunteers cleaned 1,300 miles of shoreline, maintained 143 miles of trails, removed 138,000 pounds of trash, and planted approximately 1,100 trees and shrubs on USACE-managed lands.
USACE has been involved with National Public Lands Day since its inception and has consistently been one of the event’s largest providers of sites and volunteers. As the nation’s leading federal provider of water-based recreation, USACE manages more than 400 lake and river projects in 43 states.
With 90 percent of these projects located within 50 miles of metropolitan areas, USACE sites provide a wide range of safe and affordable outdoor recreation opportunities close to home.
For more information on National Public Lands Day visit http://www.publiclandsday.org For more information on USACE recreation opportunities visit www.CorpsLakes.us.