Volunteers needed for Kentucky River cleanup event in Lexington

River Sweep 2019
River Sweep 2019(Sharon Bogner | LFUCG)
Published: Jun. 9, 2022 at 2:11 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Volunteers are invited to help kick off the summer with a clean-up of the Kentucky River.

The annual Kentucky River Clean Sweep will take place on Saturday, June 18. Participants will venture out in boats on the Kentucky River to collect trash from the 12 miles of river that touches Fayette County.

This is Lexington’s first River Sweep since 2019.

“We are very glad to be back,” says Nancy Albright, Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Quality and Public Works. “This is a great opportunity for our residents to see the Kentucky River up close and give back to the environment.”

For over two decades, new volunteers have joined returning volunteers to spend one day each summer cleaning up the Kentucky River at a family-owned site near the Madison County border.

“We are fortunate that the Kelley family has allowed us to use their boat ramp for the River Sweep every year,” says Commissioner Albright. Recently, the city entered into an agreement of sale for the property, which will be the first Lexington park with Kentucky River access. “We’re grateful for the years that we’ve been able to use this location for the River Sweep and are looking forward to the site’s future as a city park.”

River Sweep volunteers should gather at the site at 8:30 a.m. Participants will return to shore around noon, when a free lunch will be served. Volunteers will also be given a River Sweep t-shirt and a giveaway as a thank you.

Trash bags, gloves and some life vests will be provided.

Volunteers should wear clothing that can get wet and boots or close-toed shoes. Volunteers who have life vests should bring their own. The River Sweep is a rain or shine event, so please dress for the weather.

At least a dozen boats are needed to transport the 80 or so volunteers who dedicate their Saturdays year after year. Participants with extra room on their boats for others are always appreciated!

Volunteers should register online at // or by calling LexCall at 311 or (859) 425-CALL. Participants under 18 years of age must have a waiver signed by their parent or guardian. Waivers will be provided at the registration tent on the day of the River Sweep or can be downloaded from the registration website and brought to the event.

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