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HomeNL-2013-04 Armand Bayou Cleanup

Armand Bayou Cleanup
March 23, 2013
by John Bartos

Cindy found some old documents that reminded me that in 1994, the Armand Bayou Cleanup was part of the Galveston Bay Area Cleanup and at the time was coordinated by the Houston Canoe Club.  The HCC had been coordinating the event each spring since at least the early 1980s.  Maybe some of you old timers can let us know the exact date.  In 1994 we had 117 volunteers and we picked up an entire dumpster load.  I recall having to arrange getting the dumpster, bags, gloves, police and EMT support as well as publicizing the event during those years.
Anyway that event with multiple partners and sponsors became “Trash Bash”, now celebrating its 20th Anniversary.  HCC still participates in it along with multiple other cleanups around the region on the same day.  This year we had a nice contingent of members who joined over 100 other paddlers and over 700 total volunteers to spruce up a great urban wilderness and cool place to canoe and kayak.
Participants included Ann Derby, Fraser and Janice Baker, Harmon Everrett, Terry Herdlicka, Ken Anderson, Tom Douglas, Kenneth Pape, Darron Metcalf, Cindy Bartos and myself.  We paddled upstream from Bay Area Park almost to the location of the former Exxon Bridge.
Highlights for me were some nice birds seen despite the busy waterway.  We saw a flock of Cedar Waxwings, several Ospreys, a Green Heron and 3 fantastic, soaring Swallow-tailed Kites.  Quite a nice sight.
A highlight of the cleanup was that the bayou looked pretty good.  The group picked up several pallets, a garden gate and lots of beverage containers.  (Call your state legislator to tell them you support the bottle bill.)  Darron saw an item in a stump that he first thought was a game camera, but turned out to be a geocache.  He signed the log and left it for others to find. 
We got off the water, unloaded and had a lunch of hot dogs and had a chance at door prizes.  The day was a good one for a good cause and was fun as well.  

Photos can be seen here.

The author, John Bartos