River cleanup turnout greater than expected
A little mud did not stop the almost 200 volunteers who came to clean up along the banks of the Missouri River on Saturday.
"It was an incredible amount of people who came to clean up the river. The conditions were really muddy, so when the participants came to the festival after the cleanup, they were caked in mud. But, they had smiles on their faces and were excited to submit the weird finds along the banks of the river for the trash contest, which was a great success. We gave prizes to individuals who had the most interesting pieces of trash they had found in the morning," Boonville River Festival facilitator Jennifer Davis said.
Members of Missouri River Relief boated down the river early last week to prepare for the vast cleanup around Boonville. Even though, the river did not look as dirty as some locations upstream many items were recovered from the Saturday cleanup. The river relief crew were expecting between 60-70 people but, they were very elated when the turnout was triple what they were expecting. So far, the cleanup in Boonville is their largest turnout.
Before the cleanup began, boats scouted the banks searching for trash. On Wednesday, a cruise with many community members and leaders scouted the river again. The group spotted buildup of trees and some garbage near the south end of the Boonslick Bridge.
During the Saturday cleanup volunteers uncovered an entire metal love-seat set they dug out of the river bank.
Davis said all that needed to be done to refinish it would be to rub the rust off and paint it.
The crew of Missouri River Relief were working the cleanup, which began at 9 a.m. and ended at noon. Registration began at 8:30 a.m.
After cleanup all individuals invaded the west parking lot of the Isle of Capri Casino.
"The festival had already began, and started with music provided by a children's band named Wildheart,"
The last band for the evening was the Cindy Wolfe Band.
Children got to test painting art skills, which included a new paint job for Davis' car.
"I would like to thank all the supporters from around the community and the businesses and organizations that donated their time and money and for everyone who came out and had a good time. It was a blast and we hope to do it again," Davis said.