Frio River cleanup project makes splash

Volunteers have removed over 1.5 tons of trash, raised nearly $7,000 for charity

The following was submitted by Annabell McNew, executive director of the Texas Hill Country River Region.

In its second year, the “Don’t Trash Where You Splash” program funded by Uvalde County hotel occupancy tax and organized by Texas Hill Country River Region has been making a big impact on litter cleanup and prevention.

In the past, a lack of receptacles at public river access points meant tubers had to haul their trash back to their vehicles and find a disposal spot. This often meant that waste was left at the crossings. In an effort to make it easy for tired tubers to clean up, dumpsters have been placed at a number of river crossings; so far, 3,400 cubic yards of trash has been collected in these dumpsters on the Frio.

“This program has spurred litter prevention forward like never before in Uvalde County,” said Sky Lewey of Nueces River Authority. “It is an important first step in making sure our region remains one of the most beautiful places in the state.”

Volunteer groups have collected an additional 1.5 tons of trash this summer. As an added benefit to the volunteer cleanup program, each person is awarded $10 per hour of cleanup to the charity of their choice, so far raising almost $7,000 in donations to a variety of non-profits.

“One of our overnight partners, Katie Holcomb, brought this program to my attention. It was an amazing experience to not only give back to the community, but help maintain the natural beauty of our county,” said JR Quiroz of Uvalde’s H-E-B Store. “Not only did we grow together as a team, but we were also able to raise money for causes that are very dear to our hearts. It was a truly rewarding way to get involved.”

Volunteers from H-E-B Uvalde and Hondo stores have been out to clean the Frio River five times in the past two months and plan to continue these efforts throughout the summer.


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