20th Annual Yuba River Cleanup a Success!

The next generation of river stewards cleaning up by the Bridge in Washington. Photos: 49th Gold Country BPSA

On Saturday, September 16, a record number of volunteers turned out to participate in the Yuba River Cleanup! Thank you for rolling up your sleeves, pulling on your boots, and for getting dirty with us in celebration of the 20th Annual Yuba River Cleanup. The results were astounding!

With the help of 886 volunteers, we removed 12,733 pounds of garbage and 1,122 pounds of recycling. Volunteers cleaned at 35 sites from Donner Summit to Marysville and the Bear River, too. Together we helped remove nasty garbage like refrigerators, car parts and broken glass, but our work is not over.

The Yuba River Cleanup and River Ambassador program have hard costs. We are just $2,500 away from meeting our goal.

Please make a donation today so that we can continue to mobilize the community to protect the rivers we love. When you do the math, we are able to remove nearly 1 pound of trash for every dollar donated. Feel good knowing your money supports real, on-the-ground projects to keep the Yuba safe for people and the wildlife in our watershed.


A stellar Cleanup team turned out at Edwards Crossing. Photos: Nathan Anglin

SYRCL Rallies People Power

“It was wonderful to see so many families participating in the Cleanup. Our community is raising the next generation of water protectors and it is beautiful,” said Jenn Tamo, SYRCL’s Community Engagement Manager.

In addition to families, school groups and business teams pitched in to get their hands dirty for the betterment of several waterways including Deer Creek, Wolf Creek, Oregon Creek, the Bear River and Kentucky Ravine. Items pulled out of the river included office chairs, refrigerators, toilets, tires, and hundreds of cigarette butts. Check out the photos of some of our incredible volunteers below.

Riparian Restoration

SYRCL volunteers also helped to restore riparian habitat at five locations this year in partnership with Tahoe National Forest, California State Parks, and the Bureau of Land Management. Volunteers removed highly invasive species such as Himalayan blackberry, Scotch broom, and English ivy from Oregon Creek, Carlton Flat, Fiddle Creek, Kentucky Ravine and Edward’s Crossing.

Volunteer Appreciation Party at Pioneer Park

After the Cleanup, SYRCL volunteers gathered at Pioneer Park to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Cleanup. They heard from Damian Fussel from California State Senator Ted Gaines’ office, Cheri West from California Assemblyman Brian Dahle’s Office, Nevada County Supervisor Heidi Hall, and Grass Valley Vice Mayor Lisa Swarthout. All presented official proclamations honoring the Yuba River Cleanup. Sierra District California State Parks Chief Ranger, Matt Green, expressed appreciation to all volunteers on behalf of the South Yuba River State Park. Volunteers also enjoyed lunch, local brews, and musical performances by Ayla Nereo and Scott Nice.

Farewell to SYRCL Executive Director, Caleb Dardick

After six years at the helm, Caleb Dardick stepped down as Executive Director of SYRCL. The Cleanup was his final day and party goers bid him a fond farewell. “The Yuba will always be my home and I will continue to root for SYRCL’s growth and success,” said Dardick. “Words cannot fully express my deep appreciation to the Board, Leadership Team, staff, members, volunteers, donors and community for your support and encouragement.”

SYRCL introduced its next Executive Director, Nevada County resident and SYRCL staff member, Melinda Booth. Shana Maziarz, Vice President of the SYRCL board said, “We are thrilled to promote Melinda. For the past six years, Melinda has directed the Wild & Scenic Film Festival and she brings an insider’s knowledge to SYRCL’s work. Her expertise in environmental advocacy, development, program leadership, events, and outreach makes Melinda the ideal person to lead SYRCL’s efforts to unite the community to protect and restore the Yuba River,” said Maziarz.


We value your opinions and experiences.  Please complete our survey to help us make the 21st Yuba River Cleanup, September 15, 2018, the best yet!  And mark your calendars–we look forward to seeing you next year!

SAVE THE DATE for the 21st Annual Yuba River Cleanup — Saturday, September 15, 2018

The 20th Annual Yuba River Cleanup Photo Gallery

Students from Eco-Nevada Union at the Hwy 49 and Hoyt’s Crossings. Photos: EcoNU

Cleanup volunteers at Bear River Campground. Photos: Giya Day & Diana Suarez

Gold Country Fly Fishers volunteers cleaning up the Lower Yuba at Parks Bar. Photo: Peter Burns

This Cleanup team ventured out to Upper Kenebec Creek. Photo: Kurt Lorenz

One of the most popular Cleanup sites – Bridgeport! Photos: South Yuba River Parks Association & Nevada County Cannabis Alliance

A mighty show of strength by these volunteers at Deer Creek. Photos: Shana Maziarz

A good haul indeed, thanks to volunteers below Purdon Crossing. Photos: Caleb Dardick

Much-loved Purdon Crossing received a lot of love by this incredible team. Photos: Shelby Delre-Vintere

Restoration volunteers at Edward’s Crossing. Photos: Sarah Philips

Volunteers along Idaho-Maryland Road had their work cut out for them. Photos: Wolf Creek Community Alliance, Sierra Academy of Expeditionary Learning, and Byers

The Volunteer Appreciation Party

Passing the torch. Caleb’s last day and Melinda named Executive Director.
From left: with Caleb, Cheri West, Matthew Green, Sara Greensfelder, Kurt Lorenz, Solomon Henson, Julie des Tombe, and Heidi Hall.

Photo credit: Shelby Delre-Vintere, Jonathan Keene, Frieda Slavin, Alena Loomis
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