Key West Police Department and Monroe County Sheriff’s Office helped clear out occupants from under the Cheryl Cates Memorial Bridge and removed trash, bicycles and debris beside and under the bridge. The Ploggers brought out an additional 26 volunteers who cleaned U.S. 1, part of College Road and the Triangle. Thanks to host Marriott Beachside Hotel for providing breakfast afterward. The volunteers collected 376 pounds of garbage, seven pounds of recycling and three gallons of cigarette butts. CONTRIBUTED

“Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they have the heart.” — Elizabeth Andrew

One hour a week makes a huge difference, and volunteers are welcome every Friday and some Saturday mornings, from 8 to 9 a.m., when the Key West Ploggers clean up a designated area of the island.

Gloves, pickers, buckets, vests, hand sanitizer and a parking pass are provided to all volunteers. 

A troubling number of cigarette butts and plastic bags have been included in recent hauls. Please remember your reusable bags when shopping so we can keep the plastic off the streets, parking lots and, most importantly, out of the water. And dispose of cigarette butts in any receptacle rather than the street or sidewalk, as from there, they easily end up in the ocean.

The city of Key West and its residents ask everyone to do their part to help keep Key West beautiful. With simple steps like making sure you bag your trash before putting it in your Waste Management trash cans or Dumpsters, and making sure the lids on Dumpsters are closed, will keep a lot of trash from blowing into the streets. Call Waste Management at 305-296-8297 for any furniture items left on the city right of way.

Please pick up around your home or apartment complex. Every piece of trash picked up is one less that may end up in the ocean that surrounds and sustains our island community. It is not just the large items you can see easily when you are walking, but the smaller items such as bottle caps and cigarette butts that are collected by the volunteers that make the biggest difference. 

It takes committed community involvement to keep Key West beautiful and we are making progress with every cleanup event and every spot that’s adopted. Call Dorian Patton at 305-809-3782 to find out how your business, nonprofit or club can help.

The Ploggers meet Sept. 1 at White Street and Atlantic Boulevard, where 25 volunteers collected 161 pounds of trash, seven pounds of recycling and two gallons of cigarette butts. Mary Parsons received the city manager’s Extra Mile Coin. Special thanks to the Sons and Daughters of Italy Lodge for hosting the cleanup and providing the volunteers with refreshments. CONTRIBUTED

Join a 1-hour Friday morning cleanup from 8 to 9 a.m. at the following locations:

Friday, Sept. 8:  Duval & Petronia streets. Meet at Key West Business Guild office.

Friday, Sept. 15: City of Key West Fire Station on Simonton Street. Meet in parking lot.

Friday, Sept. 22: Flagler Avenue and Bertha Street. Meet at Brady’s Irish Pub.

Friday, Sept. 29: Fort and Geraldine streets. Meet at CHI Health Center parking lot.