Free Our Shores From Marine Debris Cleanup 2023

Key Biscayne, Florida
July 5, 2023


On July 5th, 2023, The International SeaKeepers Society co-hosted a coastal cleanup event called Free Our Shores, where 75+ volunteers spent the day after 4th of July festivities cleaning up the debris that was left on Virginia Key by fireworks, picnickers and party-goers in the Biscayne Bay area. This cleanup was hosted in collaboration with our partner organizations Miami Waterkeeper, Ballyhoo Media, Blue Missions, and Miami-Dade Sea Turtle Conservation Program, in conjunction with Historic Virginia Key Beach Park. Doggi’s Arepa Bar food truck was also available providing food options for participants, and breweries Tripping Animals and Dream State Brewing joined us providing a sample of their local brew selections for volunteers. A total of 241 pounds of trash was cleared from the beach and park areas thanks to all of our partnered volunteer efforts! Volunteers pulled banners and balloons from trees and out of dune areas, disposed of broken and discarded beach and fishing gear, and collected cans, bottles, food containers, and more. This cleanup was intentionally scheduled the day after one of the most polluted days of the year and is during Clean Beaches Week, which is celebrated every year from July 1-7 in an effort to keep beaches clean and pristine for all during Independence Day celebrations.

Outing Goal

Our mission at SeaKeepers begins with the foundation of research followed by the education of communities that empower them to protect and restore the surrounding coastal and marine environments. By working with and empowering local community members to reduce and remove waste from our natural areas as well as our daily lives, we aim to make a lasting impact and create life-long citizen scientists concerned with keeping coastal ecosystems healthy and enjoyable for decades to come.

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