Saturday, Oct. 11 marks the 20th anniversary of SOLV's Great Oregon Beach Cleanups, which started in Oregon on Oct. 13, 1984.

The anniversary will be observed by increased public outreach about the threats of marine debris to the coastline and a renewed commitment to volunteer cleanups.

This year, beach cleanup volunteers will have the opportunity to learn more about the damage marine debris does to the environment, through displays at the event's 42 check-in sites.

Check in stations will be at Columbia River Beach, Fort Stevens State Park, Sunset Beach Approach, Del Rey Beach Approach, Gearhart Beach Approach, Seaside Turnaround and Cannon Beach City Hall, 163 E. Gower, in Clatsop County. Choose your location and show up. Groups and organizations of 20 or more should schedule beach assignments in advance with the appropriate Zone Captain. Zone Captains and phone numbers are listed online at www.solv.org/volBeachFall.shtml#map. Call only if you are scheduling a group or have special needs.

Beach cleanups often include pack animals to help haul debris, trucks with winches to pull out heavy and buried items, divers cleaning the floors of bays and boats to take volunteers to even the most remote, inaccessible stretches of beach. Typically 4,000 to 6,000 volunteers participate in each event.

To ensure that beach cleanups in Oregon continue forever, SOLV has announced a special 20th anniversary campaign. Volunteers and others are asked to donate $20 in honor of 20 years of volunteer work. The money will be invested in SOLV's endowment, the Gift to Oregon Fund at the Oregon Community Foundation.

Donations to the Gift to Oregon Fund may be made by contacting SOLV at 1-800-333-SOLV. Volunteer information for the beach cleanup can be found at www.solv.org or by contacting SOLV.

If you go ...The annual Beach Cleanup is 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 11. Some tips to make it a fun and safe experience:

• Bring rubber gloves or other hand protection

• Don't touch medical waste (needles, bandages, etc.) Mark the spot and tell the beach captain

• Watch for sneaker waves

• Be careful on rocks or cliffs

• Be aware of incoming tides

• Avoid logs in the surf

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